The government came in to solve the impasse following disagreements between the Federation of Uganda Football Association (FUFA) and the league managers Uganda Super League Ltd (USLL) that gave birth to two leagues; Fufa Super League (FSL) sanctioned by the federation and the Bell Uganda Super League under USLL.
In a statement released by the Minister of Education and Sports Hon. Jessica Alupo Epel on Monday 12th at Media Centre in Kampala, a lot of issues were tackled in a seven page document.
Interestingly, though the minister had given the limelight to the two leagues to continue un interrupted till they ended last season, the document clearly stated that 2012/13 USL Champions Maroons FC have been demoted to the Fufa Big League for failure to comply with Fufa and register with the Fufa Super League last season.
When asked what will happen to the double faced clubs like Masaka LC, Express FC, Water FC, Kiira Young, Entebbe FC, Police FC, SC Villa and Victors among others that honoured fixtures in both leagues, Alupo said that they will have a chance to re-unify under one in order to be able to play in the new league.
“All double faced football clubs are required to re-unify under one single composition of directorship in order to play in the new season”, read part of the statement.
“For avoidance of doubt, officials of clubs that played under USL may join the officials of the clubs that played under FSL and not the other way round”.
Nevertheless, this maybe a key to wrangles at clubs like SC Villa where the legally registered SC Villa played in the USL and not the FSL.
Also important to note in the document, government has made it clear that it recognizes all the federation as the body mandated to run all official football competitions in the country including the league.
Though the minister had earlier stated in an interview with Daily Monitor that the UPL will be run by the 16 league clubs as per the Jinja Declaration, the document shows that FUFA will run the league with the assistance of a five man independent committee that will be announced in the next few weeks.
When asked whether the sponsors will continue to sponsor the league run by Fufa, the minister said that Uganda Breweries and Supersport are ready to fund the league as long as harmony is ensured in the game.
Key notes from the Ministry of Education and Sports document:
- There will only be one national soccer league next season 2013/14 called Uganda Premier League
- Express FC, SC Victoria University, URA FC, SC Villa, Masaka LC, Simba SC, Police FC, Vipers SC, Bright Stars FC, CRO, KCC FC, Proline FC, Entebbe FC, Kiira Young, Bidco FC and Soana are the 16 clubs that will take part in the 2013/14 UPL season.
- The expertise in Football league management and the sponsors/donor's confidence residing in the USLL shall be tapped into by using employees of the USLL as the nucleus staff of the new league.
- All pending court cases or court process related to USL - FSL league dispute be withdrawn or halted
- Government will not permit kick off of the league next season (2013/14) unless its one.
- Ministry of Education and Sports to review the regulatory framework of governing sports in the country with a view of providing for professional Sports and a sports Arbitration Tribunal.
- The Ministry of Education and Sports with concerned stakeholders will continue to engage with football sponsors with a view of retaining existing sponsorship of Supersport and Uganda Breweries
- Banned/suspended USL officials will be granted amnesty as authorized by FIFA through Fufa