The Uganda Netball Federation (UNF) incurred a debt of Shs 1 billion after facilitating the national team’s participation at the 2019 Netball World Cup in Liverpool, England.
The World Cup attracted 16 national teams including Uganda that finished seventh with New Zealand winning the title. Following financial hiccups in the preparations for the World Cup, the Ugandan team and some technical officials travelled a week to the World Cup and therefore spent 18 days in Liverpool, England.
The federation facilitated a total of 30 people who included 14 players, 16 government and technical officials. The federation incurred the World Cup debt because it received borrowed funds from the National Council of Sports (NCS) due to failure by the government to release the required funds.
The UNF treasurer, Yusuf Kamulegeya says that the federation requested for Shs 2.1 billion for the World Cup activities including air tickets, visa fees, residential trainings and also build-up games, allowances and meals before and during the World Cup.
However, a week to the World Cup, the government had not released funds, which Kamulegeya says prompted the governing body, National Council of Sports to borrow Shs 1 billion to ensure that the team is facilitated.
According to Kamulegeya, the Shs 1 billion was spent on allowances which took Shs 300 million because each of the players and officials received Shs 10 million while the remaining funds were spent on meals and incentives – Shs 12 million in total for the players, with each getting about Shs 920,000. Uganda Netball Federation president Susan Anek, said that Ugandans living in the United Kingdom organized a dinner for the delegation and also gave each player £25 pounds (about Shs 115,000). Anek says that initially, the federation had proposed to pay each player $8,000 (about Shs 29m) as allowances under the total budget request of Shs 3.3 billion for the World Cup.
At the recent International Netball Federation congress, national federation presidents discussed the possibility of giving out monetary prizes to the winning team or teams of the World Cup as an incentive. Uganda pays $250 (about Shs 912,500) as annual affiliation fees to INF and also paid $600 (about Shs 2.1 million) as participation fees for the World Cup.
However, starting next year, affiliation and World Cup participation fees have been revised to $350 (Shs 1.2) and $1,000 (Shs 3.6m) respectively. Anek says that the federation is yet to receive a technical report on the performance of the She Cranes at the World Cup.