Union of European Football Associations (UEFA) President, Aleksander Čeferin on Wednesday made a landmark tour of slums in Kireka Banda B1 Zone to appreciate the charity and sports projects run by the Aliguma Foundation.
The primary purpose of Čeferin’s coming to Uganda was to visit Aliguma Foundation and check the progress of the Acholi Quarters project. Among others, Čeferin and his team spent the better part of the day checking on different works of Aliguma Foundation in promoting better livelihoods in the slum communities through sports especially football.
After speaking to the locals of Kireka Banda B1 Zone where the women supported by Aliguma Foundation displayed the products of their crafts, Čeferin abandoned a fleet of VIP vehicles (that he was initially moving with) and trekked for over 1 kilometer from that area to the Acholi Quarters playground where he would later officially kick-off the Slums Schools Sports Gala that is run by the Aliguma Foundation.
“This is amazing! It is an emotional experience as it helps us to know what real life feels like. I am really grateful to Ritah and the Foundation,” Čeferin told media in a quick briefing at Acholi Quarters playground.
Earlier at Kireka Banda B1 Zone, Čeferin told locals that; “football is not only about playing football,” adding that that’s why they have the UEFA Foundation for Children, a charitable organization that helps children around the world, of which Aliguma Foundation is a beneficiary.
“When we saw what the Aliguma Foundation was doing, there absolutely no doubt that they will be helpful to the community. I’m looking forward to seeing more of their work,” Čeferin noted adding that UEFA will help develop the Acholi Quarters playground but government will also need to chip in.
While at Kireka Banda B1 Zone, Minister of State for Sports Peter Ogwang narrated his ‘Ghetto Story’ to the locals and he told them that if he was able to make it from the slums of Moru Apesur in Soroti City to parliament and cabinet, anyone can transform themselves if they are determined to do it.
He also noted that the ministry will seek a partnership with UEFA to develop sports infrastructure centers and also enroll Uganda’s coaches for the UEFA pro-licensing program.
“Even us as a ministry, our focus is on infrastructure, that’s where our emphasis is right now,” Ogwang said adding that he is grateful to the Aliguma Foundation CEO, Ritah Aliguma for inviting the UEFA President to the country.
For Ritah Aliguma, she was delighted to host the UEFA boss and she believes that his visit will not leave the locality the same.
“His visit means a lot to this community. It brings a message of hope and love to this place. He is an inspiration and I believe many young people here will be inspired by this visit,” Aliguma said.
Čeferin was flanked by his UEFA counterparts, that is; Kevin Lamour – Member of the Board, Urs Kluser – General Secretary and Sršen Matej – Consultant.
After his stay in Uganda, Čeferin left for Kigali, Rwanda ahead of the 73rd FIFA Congress scheduled for 16th March 2023.
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