President Museveni and First Lady who is also Minister for Education at launch of the bid.

President Yoweri Kaguta Museveni on Monday, 22 launched Uganda’s joint bid to host the African Cup of Nations (AFCON) tournament at State House, Entebbe.

“Sports are very good, and it has now transformed from mere games to employment. This is good, let’s take advantage of it but don’t confuse the youth that it is the only thing,” the President said.

President Museveni welcomed the idea to host AFCON in 2027 but warned that the youth should not be lost in sports and forget other income generating activities.

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“Add sports to the ancient sources of income like agriculture, manufacturing, hotels and others,” President Museveni told the National Council of Sports (NCS) officials who had paid a visit to him at State House, Entebbe.

President Museveni said that sports promote good health and keep people fit.

“Sports help you to burn calories and fight getting fat,” The President remarked.

He also noted that sports are also a source of entertainment for both the players and the spectators which is better than going to the bar and indulging in other bad behaviors. 

President Museveni further said that for East Africa to come together and host the African Cup of Nations in 2027 is a good idea because it is another dimension to promote and publicize East Africa and also promote tourism.

“People who do not know East Africa, will know and come,” he said.

The First Lady Mama Janet who doubles as Minister of Education and Sports said that Sports, particularly football, fuels patriotism and encourage responsible citizenship among youth. It now also serves as a global economic driver, creating jobs and stimulating national development.

“This presents an excellent opportunity for us to demonstrate our organizational capabilities, as we have done in previous international events hosted in the region, such as Uganda’s 2007 Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting,” Janet said.

The East Africa Pamoja Bid, supported by the founding nations of the East African Community, is a timely initiative to strengthen regional integration, enhance trilateral relations, and celebrate collaborative initiatives such as EACOP and the East African SGR.

Janet Museveni commended Ogwang, FUFA, and their Kenyan and Tanzanian counterparts for their robust presentation to the Confederation of African Football (CAF) Secretariat. Uganda is committed to providing the promised infrastructure, including stadiums, enhanced IT and aviation facilities, and encouraging private sector engagement in hotel expansion.

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Reporter whose work is detailed