Owek. Prof. Twaha Kigongo Kaawaase the 1st Deputy Prime Minister, and Minister for administration and ICT in the Buganda Kingdom, reminded professional boxers that, unlike board games, their sport survives on the physical ability of an athlete.
This was today at the Kingdom headquarters where Great Strikers International and the International University of East Africa (IUEA) paid a courtesy visit, to introduce achievements from boxers Shafik Kiwanuka and Latibu Muwonge.
Shafik is the WBF Africa, and UBC Intercontinental Heavyweight Champion while Latibu Muwonge beat Kenyan Emmanuel Chvoli and Ugandan Sserwada Sadam to win the WBF Africa, and the Uganda Professional Boxing Commission Championship, respectively.
“The sport you are in requires a lot of physical strength, which you can only have while you are still young and energetic. The older you grow, the more you are driven out of the sport. This means you should try and see that you utilize that opportunity of being a young and energetic athlete to hit your prime.” The Prime Minister said.
“Sport is a unifying factor and it strengthens the Kingdom throne because the youth are the King’s protectors for this is their generation. Sports doesn’t know tribe, political party, or religious dispensation. It is the first “federal” as it brings all people together to uplift the sport.” He added.
In his speech, the Katikkiro also advised the two boxers Shafik and Latibu to refrain from intoxicants and womanizing if they are to reach the tip of their careers.
Chatting with the boxers about their visit, Shafik Kiwanuka aka Killing machine noted that its an honor for him and the team as well to be appreciated by the Kingdom.
“This is a great opportunity for talents, boxers, and my team “biso bisala” to be appreciated by the Katikkiro for our achievements and also pay a visit to the Kingdom. I can only urge Ugandans out there to come and support us and to my fellow boxers starting their journey, keep working hard, be patient, pray, and remain disciplined as you wait for your blessing.” The heavyweight champion said.
Youngster Latibu Muwonge Byakatonda said; “I have come back to deliver what I yielded from the battlefield. The two belts I won have motivated me to work more and keep looking at high targets. The sport unites people and I am happy that the kingdom recognizes that.”
The Minister for Youth, Sports, and Recreation Owek.Henry Ssekabembe, thanked the International University of East Africa (IUEA) for offering scholarships to boxers as a means of changing their mindset and in the end, rewriting how they are perceived by the public.
“We thank the International University of East Africa and other sponsors for offering scholarships to these boxers. Out there African countries were known for problems and crime. But through sports, the Uganda flag has been flown high.” The minister emphasized
“You can’t separate the kingdom of Buganda and boxing unless you despise history. At the cabinet level, we plan to have a memorandum of understanding with the boxing federation to solve many of the challenges boxers are facing. I would like to advise the youth in boxing and all other sports who misuse such opportunities of going back to school to rethink.” He said.
Shafik Kiwanuka will be trekking to Tanzania for a heavyweight bout on 16th September while Latibu Muwonge challenges for a world title on 19th September but both managements are yet to clarify who the opponents are.