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Women Football: FIFA-FUFA Club Licensing Seminar successfully held

Club Licensing is a tool that aims at delivering professionalism to clubs both in the short and long term. The process looks at improving clubs in different areas such as sporting, governance, Finance, Administration and Legal among others.

FUFA is committed towards improving standards in Women’s competitions with efforts made across several spheres.

It is upon this background that FUFA sought for a FIFA Club Licensing Seminar from the World Football governing body. This was held on Thursday, 19th May 2022 at Imperial Royale Hotel with officials from clubs (FUFA Women Super League and FUFA Women Elite League) attending.

Club officials from FUFA Women Super League and FUFA Women Elite League pose for a group photo with FIFA Officials and FUFA President, Hon. Magogo Moses Hassim.

Andres Portabella, FIFA Advisor to Professional Football and Women’s Football Departments and Bruno Van Hellemont, the FIFA Professionalisation Manager (Women Football Division) were the instructors for the one day workshop.

Andres Portabella, FIFA Advisor to Professional Football and Women’s Football Departments
FIFA Professionalisation Manager (Women Football Division), Bruno Van Hellemont.

FUFA President, Hon. Magogo Moses Hassim opened the workshop and gave testimony of how Women’s Football has evolved and where the Federation wants to go.

FUFA President, Hon. Magogo Moses Hassim.

“I want to say that today’s workshop is like living a dream. In 2013, we made a very unpopular decision of withdrawing our Uganda U20 Women’s National Team from International engagements despite having beaten South Sudan 22-0 on aggregate. But as FUFA, we thought creating a regular league would give more girls chance to play and help us increase the pool. I’m glad that nine years down the road, the Crested Cranes will play at this year’s Women’s Africa Cup of Nations in Morocco, the U20 and U17 Teams have come close in the FIFA World Cup Qualifiers and women’s football in Uganda has made big strides,” he said.

The President is happy that over the years, Women’s Football continues to grow with increase in the number of girls playing football.

FUFA President, Hon. Magogo Moses Hassim.

“Currently, Uganda has over 5,000 girls playing football. Our target in 2013 was to increase the number of girls playing football because this eventually creates teams that result into competitions and then form National Teams. We have moved a long journey but our target is even to achieve more in future and this FIFA Club Licensing Seminar is a key pillar in our quest for professionalize Women’s Football.” The President added.

FUFA President, Hon. Magogo Moses Hassim handing over a book on FUFA Strategy to Bruno Van Hellemont.
FUFA 3rd Vice President, Hon. Florence Nakiwala Kiyingi handing over a book on FUFA’s journey since 2013 to Andres Portabella.

Bruno Van Hellemont, the FIFA Professionalisation Manager (Women Football Division) indicated the Seminar was supposed to come earlier only to be affected by COVID-19.

FIFA Professionalisation Manager (Women Football Division), Bruno Van Hellemont.

“I’m privileged to be in Uganda and I bring greetings from FIFA. We are here to preach the gospel of Club Licensing in Women’s Football. This was supposed to happen sometime back but due to COVID-19, we were unable to meet physically. The opportunity is here for us to share with clubs and as well listen to them on how best we can apply the Club Licensing process.” He said.

His colleague, Andres Portabella, FIFA Advisor to Professional Football and Women’s Football Departments revealed that the exercise is open to all the FIFA Member Associations but only FUFA from Africa undertook the process.

FIFA Advisor to Professional Football and Women’s Football Departments Andres Portabella.

“FIFA Club Licensing is open to all the 211 Member Associations and it is currently running across 16 countries. In Africa, it’s only FUFA that asked to this Seminar and this indicates how the Federation is committed towards improving Women’s Football in Uganda.”

David Katende, the National Council of Sports Assistant General Secretary- Technical stressed that football is a dynamic sport and thus clubs ought to embrace Club Licensing which aims at improving standards.

NCS Assistant General Secretary-Technical, David Katende.

“I’m really happy to be here and this Workshop is important in helping to develop our domestic competitions especially Women’s Football to also get to the professional ranks. Football is a dynamic sport and therefore we must embrace new trends. Therefore, Club Licensing is here to help us develop both on and off the pitch. Said Katende.

FUFA CEO, Edgar Watson while making his presentation highlighted the key aspects that the Club Licensing project looks at and the journey moved so far.

FUFA CEO, Edgar Watson

The 5 key areas include;

-Governance
-Sporting
-Finance
-Legal
-Administrative and Personnel

Group photo of Club administrators and FIFA officials Andres Portabella and Bruno Van Hellemont

Ali Mwebe, the FUFA Football Development Director revealed that going forward, the federation will extend the FUFA Clubs Pro Agenda to Women’s Football as a way of delivering professionalism.

FUFA Football Development Director Ali Mwebe talking to participants

“Club Licensing should not seem like a burden to clubs. As FUFA we are making several interventions to make sure our clubs attain professionalism. Starting next season, we shall extend the Clubs Pro Agenda exercise to Women’s Football.” He stated.

Richard Kawere, the Chairman She Corporate FC presented on behalf clubs giving a testimony on how far his club has moved.

She Corporate FC Chairman Richard Kawere.

FIFA promised to make a follow up and constant monitoring of how much the clubs are adhering to the set standards.

Andres Portabella during his presentation during the workshop.
Uganda Martyrs WFC CEO, John Baptist Ssemujju.
Wakiso Hill WFC President, Wilber Shaka.
Lady Doves FC CEO, Scovia Angeyango.
Sarah Apanyo, the Olila High School WFC CEO.
Kawempe Muslim Ladies FC CEO, Ahmed Lubulwa.
Uganda Women Football Association Chairperson, Margaret Kubingi.
Luweero Giant Queens Chairman, Edward Lugolobi.
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