For the third time running, the Uganda Premier League stakeholders have voted to change the UPL Memorandum and articles of association (MEMARTS) to extend the mandate of the FUFA Super League board led by veteran journalist, Arinaitwe Rugyendo.
The other four members are; Vice Chairman David Serebe, Board Secretary Peter Kibazo, Humphrey Mandu (also Fufa deputy CEO) and Guy Francis Kawuma.
In their release to press, the UPL stated that the members extended the mandate to allow the board more time to prepare for new elections and organize their documents.
“The Mandate of the Uganda Premier league (UPL) board has been extended for the second time following an Extra Ordinary General Meeting,” the statement reads in part.
It further explained that the move was meant: “to allow for harmonization of the then current company documents and prepare for the Election of a new Board in six months.”
The five-man board was first given the mandate to oversee the Uganda Premier League in 2015.
The body held their next general meeting the following year on 23rd September 2018 but with a selected number of journalists allowed to cover at the Essella Country Hotel in the suburbs of Kampala and not the usual Namboole boardroom.
The members, who include the sixteen topflight clubs and Fufa, then changed the laws to extend the board’s stay by one year in June 2016 during an Annual General Meeting at Namboole.
Fufa’s initial plan was to change to a three-year term but the members led by the then vibrant Mujib Kasule vehemently opposed and settled for only two.
The elective meeting voted Rugyendo unopposed after no other candidate showed interest.
The board’s mandate ran for two years and expired on March 23rd this year but, in an interesting turn of events, the urgently constituted extra ordinary meeting passed to extend the stay by two more months until the end of the football season – July 30th.
Some sections of the stakeholders feel the move is to keep away former SC Villa and current Nyamityobora FC president Ben Missaga out of the process.
Missaga has been fighting what he calls “impunity” and had leaked the information about Fufa’s intentions to extend board’s mandate to July in his blog on the Observer Newspaper.
“.. the members (shareholders) of FUFA Super League Limited (FSLL) realized that the board needed more time to finish the process and hence the extension of its mandate up to 30th July 2019,” the UPL statement further explained.