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UMEA Solidarity Games Return After Four Years’ Break

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The Uganda Muslim Education Association (UMEA) Solidarity Games will return this weekend after a four-year halt.

The games played amongst muslim-founded secondary schools have been on a hold since 2019 due to the outbreak of COVID-19 pandemic.

Efforts have been happening behind the curtains to revive the annual competition and the good news is that the 2023 edition is confirmed, coming bigger and better than ever before.

This year’s edition was launched on Wednesday 5th, April 2023 at  Kawanda Secondary School who are the hosts.

According to Hajji Hussein Lwembawo, the General Secretary of the UMEA Solidarity Games, 40 schools have confirmed participation with over 100 teams registered across different sports disciplines.

“We are happy to confirm that our prestigious UMEA Solidarity Games return this year after overcoming the challenge of COVID-19. We have increased participation and hoping for the best performance from all the participating schools,” he said.

The games running under the theme (Environment and Us) will be staged between Friday 7th April to Monday 10th April 2023 with schools expected to report on Thursday.

Kawanda Secondary School Headmaster, Ahmed Bukenya Kamoga expressed his readiness to host the games.

“Kawanda S.S is extremely proud to be hosts of this year’s edition. We are ready and only waiting for kick off of the games on Friday, we are very ready in terms of accommodation, playing areas, welfare and the rest,” Bukenya confirmed.

UMEA games started in 1998 but rebranded to UMEA Solidarity Games in 2013 and this is the 8th edition since rebirth.

Hajji Twahir Kitezaala Muhammed Chairperson UMEA Solidarity Games said;
“Last year we were not ready to organize the games because of the congested calendar of sports events but this time we are very ready to have the tournament that was last held in 2019. This is a special edition because we are hosting it in the month of Ramadan, and everyone going to take part in it will be blessed,” he stated.

Kitezaala said that the games are intended to promote friendship, to create relationship amongst Moslem schools and prepare school teams for regional, national and international duties.

Six disciplines have been earmarked for this year’s edition for both girls and boys namely; football, handball, volleyball, badminton, table tennis, Netball (girls only) and Woodball (exhibition).

The notable schools that have confirmed participation include; the hosts of Kawanda SS, Kawempe Muslim SS, Mbogo Mixed, Mbogo High School, Kinaawa High, Masaka SS, Kibuli SS, Kinaawa High School Mugongo, Greenlight, London College.

Six venues will be used during the tournament and these include; Kawanda SS Playground, Kawanda Agricultural Research Institute, Namalere, Mbogo Mixed SS, Brixton Jokolera, Kawempe Muslim SS and Ssekabaka Kyabaggu Stadium.

The Opening ceremony will be held on Friday at 2PM at Kawanda SS and the guest of Honor will be Hajji Mulindwa Ismail, the Director of Basic Education in the Ministry of Education and Sports.

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