Uganda Parliament team starts preps to defend Inter-Parliamentary games title
By Emmanuel Sekago
Members of Parliament and staff of Uganda have started preparing for the forthcoming East African Community Inter-Parliamentary Games to defend their title.
The Parliamentary team is currently training for the games to be held in Kigali, Rwanda. The national parliaments of Uganda, Kenya, Tanzania, Burundi, South Sudan, East African Legislative Assembly (EALA) and host nation Rwanda will be participating in eight sports disciplines that include football, netball, volleyball, Athletics, tug of war, golf, basketball and darts.
It should be noted that Rwanda last hosted the 6th Edition of the EAC Inter-Parliamentary Games Tournament in Kigali that started from December 4th to 11th 2015.
Pursuant to provisions of Article 49 (2) (a) of the Treaty for the Establishment of the East African Community, the EAC Inter-Parliamentary Games is a key aspect of building relations between the East African Legislative Assembly (EALA) and the National Assemblies in the EAC region.
Recognizing the decision by the EAC Speakers’ Forum in 2009, to institutionalize the Inter-Parliamentary Games as an annual activity while employing the principle of rotation and by urging all National Assemblies and Parliaments to have a budget line to facilitate their respective teams’ to participate annually;
WHEREAS Article 119 of the Treaty for the Establishment of the East African Community obliges the Partner States to promote close co-operation amongst themselves in culture and sports, with respect to; the promotion and enhancement of diverse sports activities, the development of mass media programmes on matters that will promote the development of culture and sports within the Community; AND WHEREAS through the Inter-Parliamentary Games, Members of Parliament have enhanced interaction with the citizenry of the Partner States, leveraged sensitization of EAC citizens and has contributed to the health of Members and staff;
Recalling that the EAC Inter-Parliamentary Games Tournament held in Kigali, Rwanda it was the 1st time in the entire history of the Tournament that EALA/EAC won gold medals and a trophy in football.
The Inter-Parliamentary Games are preceded by a Pre-Tournament Conference where Members and staff are expected to bond in a relaxed atmosphere therefore, building harmony prior to the commencement of the Inter-Parliamentary Games.
Now as the Uganda parliamentary team prepares itself, the task ahead is for them to defend their title and also emerge as winners in other categories. But all the sporting disciplines captains need to know that sports requires all the support that it deserves if they are to retain the overall trophy.
In the 12th edition held in Juba, South Sudan, Uganda parliamentary team got the better of the games winning Netball, Basketball women, Golf, Darts and Athletics but lost in three games football, Basketball men and Volleyball.
In Golf deputy speaker Thomas Tayebwa had an impressive performance in Nairobi, Kenya giving Uganda a comfortable position in the final performance, while in Darts NUP, Nakawa Member of parliament Ronald Balimwezo and his PWD counterpart Hon Mpindi Bumali (Ind) made their rivals rue their participation in the competition where the two regained supremacy. Darts is for People with Disabilities (PWD). PWD is a newly introduced sporting discipline.
The theme for this year’s 13th edition is yet to be known but for last year’s 12th edition of IPG games was; “Widening and Deepening Integration by increasing visibility to its citizens.”
Meanwhile, talking to wallnetnews, the government Chief Whip also Ajuri county Member of Parliament Rt Hon. Hamson Obua, said several fields had been identified for Uganda parliament team to use during preparations with Lugogo Indoor Stadium for indoor related games like basketball, volleyball, netball; Phillip Omondi Stadium for football, Kitante Club for golf and Cricket oval for mean time will be used for training athletics team.