Updated: Feb 5
ALIGUMA FOUNDATION BANDA SLUMS SOCCER
RESULTS – SEVENTH EDITION
Men - Main Final
NBA Shooting Stars 2-2 Nakawa Boyz
NBA Shooting Stars won post-match penalties 4-3
U-14 Junior Boys
Hilton 0-0 Nobles
Nobles won post-match penalties 5-4
U-13 Junior Boys
Hilton 1-0 AQ Select Soccer Academy
Soccer - Women Friendly
Blue Wave 6-0 Naguru Community
Netball Women’s Final – 12pm
Blue Wave 13-4 Hilton
Over The Top Celebrations: The elation of winning a penalty shootout was on show by the NBA Shooting Stars after they edged Nakawa Boyz to take home a cow, medals and trophy on January 22, 2023. (Photo/Aliguma Foundation Media)
The Aliguma Foundation does thrive and feed off meticulousness. The elite volunteers of the foundation were following proceedings on the grand finale day of the seventh edition of Aliguma Foundation Banda Slums Soccer Tournament with smiles of content plastered across their faces.
The hard work put in since November 18th, 2022 when the annual event started was bearing fruit and even if there were some afternoon rain showers, they did little to dampen the electric mood that had at least 6,000 fans crammed onto the hedges and rafters of the grass-thin Acholi Quarters Playground on January 22, 2023.
Unlike other editions, the community involvement was overawing and a bit emotional with slum dwellers justifiably starting to literally accept that this two-month long tournament was purely their beneficiary.
Emotions In Motion: NBA Shooting Stars players swarm their goalkeeper David Wafula after he heroically saved two penalties to secure the coveted title.(Photo/Aliguma Foundation Media)
Ritah Aliguma, the foundation’s founder, highlighted the epic growth of the tournament and more so the wholesome inclusivity and involvement of the community.
“This one was a very special tournament. See how big and competitive it has become. We are appreciative and thankful to God,” said Ritah Aliguma soon after NBA Shooting Stars edged Nakawa Boys 4-3 in the post-match penalties to be crowned champions by the State Minister for Sports Hon. Peter Ogwang and Minister of Disaster Preparedness and Refugees Hon. Hillary Onek under fading light on January 22nd, 2023.
“But we also realise that this time round; the unity, love, and team spirit exhibited was on a high level. The community got involved in cleaning and helping out with many things right from the morning. It shows the community loves this and they are so involved and fond of Aliguma Foundation initiatives and activities,” added Ritah Aliguma in her remarks at the prize-giving and closing ceremony.
Shooting Stars’ fairytale
For the new champions NBA Shooting Stars, they were the toast of the crowd, not just because they had just ended Luigi FC and Tigers FC’s stranglehold of the event but because they had denied a non-Acholi Quarters-based franchise from taking the glittering trophy away from their midst.
Catch Me If You Can: NBA Shooting Stars striker Abdallah Mutete (bare chest) wheels off in celebration after hitting the back of the net against Nakawa Boyz in the final. (Photo/Aliguma Foundation Media)
Shooting Stars, who are also Acholi Quarters-based, had their goalkeeper David Wafula to thank for his two heroic penalty saves.
Ezra Emenyu and David Mugalu had hit the target for Shooting Stars whereas Hector Tukirize and Abdallah Mutete had done all they could to ensure Nakawa Boyz stayed alive as the match ended in a 2-2 stalemate.
The stage had been set for goalie Wafula to stop Tukirize and Fazil Chizo with only Fazil Fiti, Reagan Mubiru and Mutete managing to find the back of the net.
For the Shooting Stars, it was only Solomon Jakisa that failed to convert from 12 yards with the quartet of Eric Muzungu, Totti Abeka, Isham Kaka and Kenny Mukwaya all making it count to send their fans into rapturous celebrations.
Event now bigger
The events of the day were indeed a rare sight as they had the rather busy Ismail Mukoiko – the L.C III Councillor of the Kireka-Banda B Zone where several slum-communities are inhabitants – boasting how his organisational skills don’t get enough praise.
Big Dreamers: Acholi Quarters-based Nobles were crowned the U-14 champions after a 5-4 penalty win over Hilton FC. (Photo/Aliguma Foundation Media)
“See what I have done with my team today. We could have filled Namboole (42,000-seater Mandela National Stadium). I give special applause to my team,” said Mukoiko who is also the Chief Tournament Organiser since its inception.
Hon Onek didn’t hold back as he passionately poured out his heart to the underprivileged communities.
“You have been here since morning and went on to even brave the afternoon rains. I have seen future Cranes players across all the teams. This is turning out to be a bigger event. Acholi Quarters we’re unstoppable and we shall always win. This crowd can fill Namboole. I want to laud Aliguma Foundation and their CEO Ritah for giving our people hope and encouragement,” the excited Onek endlessly went on as he also offered UGX.2.5 MILLION to winners of the championship that attracted at least 50 teams across the different categories.
Practice What You Preach: Minister of Disaster Preparedness and Refugees Hon. Hillary Onek offered Shs2.5m and pledged more support in kind. (Photo/Aliguma Foundation Media)
Turf promise & land question
Hon. Ogwang took the acknowledgment a notch further by not only offering UGX. 3 MILLION in prize money; UGX. 2 MILLION for the NBA Shooting Stars and UGX. 1 MILLION as a consolation for Nakawa Boyz, he tasked Councilor Mukoiko to sort out the land issue of the Acholi Quarters Playground so that he can fundraise for an artificial turf for the only sporting sanctuary that has birthed many renowned soccer, rugby, athletics and cricket talents among others for Uganda including Sadat Anaku, Joseph Oyet and Chris Lubanga.
“I bring greetings from Maama Janet Museveni who is the Minister of Education & Sports,” started Ogwang in his trademark tone.
“This is the best way to harness your talents and stay out of trouble. I would love to start an artificial turf fundraiser for this pitch but can the leadership and elders here sort out the land question. Who owns this land?” questioned Ogwang.
Silky Skills: State Sports Minister Peter Ogwang not only showed off his ball-juggling skills but also rewarded the two main final finalists UGX.3MILLION as prize money. (Photo/Aliguma Foundation Media)
Cocktail of activities
A roving band got the day going as Aliguma Foundation officials, partners, volunteers and slum-dwellers traversed the Kireka-Banda-Kinawataka-Mbuya zone pushing and preaching their campaigns against the abuse of the girl-child (Ndi Mwana – The Cry of A Girl Child), Stop Drug Abuse and Women Empowerment as well as taking the little ones back to school.
The main purpose of the foundation is to primarily continue transforming communities through sports and enterprise. Through the drumming walk, they were able to make stopovers and hand over sanitary pads, balls and some mama kits to the zonal elders and leaders.
Girls Wanna Have Fun: Blue Wave (green bibs) and Hilton (red bibs) exchange pleasantries in the netball final. (Photo/Aliguma Foundation Media)
After the walk, the community elders got the action on pitch underway with a beautiful barren draw which was followed by Blue Wave overwhelming Hilton 13-4 in the netball final.
It was double joy for Blue Wave as they overpowered Naguru Community 6-0 in the women’s soccer friendly. Hilton then suffered mixed fortunes when their U-13 Boys side edged Acholi Quarters Soccer Academy 1-0 in the final but endured the ignominy of defeat in the U-14 Boys final after Nobles nicked the shootout 5-4.
The new champions NBA Shooting Stars took home a trophy, a bull and gold medals while the silver medallists Nakawa Boyz will feast on a goat and have silver medals and jerseys as their souvenirs from the edition that attracted at least 50 teams across the different age and women categories inclusive of other non-soccer sporting disciplines.
The heavily attended closing and awards ceremony was also graced by former United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) Representative Joel Boutroue, Uganda Sports Press Association (USPA) president Moses Alsayed, Next Media's Joe Kigozi and LC V Nakawa Councilor Olive Namazzi.
It goes without saying that the day's activities were also primarily funded by Nigerian international Ola Aina who not only made a financial contribution to the Slums Soccer event, the Aliguma Foundation Soccer Academy (AFSA) but also offered his Torino FC original jersey for auctioning to fund other foundation activities.
Goals Machine: Nakawa LC V Councillor Olive Namazzi presents the Golden Boot to Alfred Onen of Acholi Quarters-based Riders FC. Onen found the back of the net six times. (Photo/Aliguma Foundation Media)
The UEFA Foundation through their Sports and Resilience Empowerment Project (SREP) and UNHCR are the primary partners with the Aliguma Foundation for this annual showpiece
ROLL OF CHAMPIONS
2023: NBA Shooting Stars
2022: Tigers FC
2021: Tigers FC
2020: Luigi FC
2019: Luigi FC
2018: Kiganda FC
2017: Kawenja FC