FIFA clears Uganda to face Ghana

FIFA has cleared the path for Uganda to face Ghana in the 2018 World Cup qualifiers after the world governing body lifted a threat of a global ban on the East African country.

The Cranes were on the verge of being axed from the qualifiers which start in October because of government interference in the sport.

But FIFA removed the threat on Tuesday afternoon after the Ugandan government met the conditions required to keep the country in line with the statutes of the world football governing body.

FIFA sent two representatives to Uganda to meet with government officials over a request last month to get the governing of football to come under the control of the sports ministry.

FIFA issued the ban threat last month when the Federation of Ugandan Football Associations (FUFA) was being asked to sign as a trustee with the government.

FIFA ruled that the move was government interference which is prohibited under its statutes and that meant if it was not removed the country will be banned from the global game.

If FIFA had gone ahead of with its threat, Uganda could not have played Ghana in the qualifiers for the 2018 World Cup when they face the Black Stars, Egypt and Congo for a place in Russia.

The Sports Minister, Charles Bakkabulindi and FIFA officials agreed that FUFA can indeed register as a trustee but secured assurances from government that there will be no interference.

“We are happy the government has agreed not to interfere and will work for the development of football in the country,” Luca Nicola, the Manager of Member Associations at FIFA said.

The news comes as a huge relieve for the Cranes as they can qualify for the 2017 Africa Cup of Nations if they beat Comoros in September.

Uganda are also into the final round of qualifying for the 2018 World Cup where they will face Ghana.

 

Aisha JM