Back in 2005, when Dr Lawrence Mulindwa plucked Moses Magogo from sycophancy to Fufa’s grand stage of football administration, he must have thought he was transforming a loudmouth into a football intellectual.
After eight years at the Fufa helm, Mulindwa felt he had had enough and left the stage for Magogo, but unbeknownst to him, he had groomed a self-centred successor that has held the sport hostage for the past decade. With each passing year, Magogo has continued to create clauses within the Fufa statutes to entrench himself in the game by ringfencing his position.
Like many people of his ilk who overcame impoverishment to reach the top, he believes he is the messiah of Ugandan football and the sport cannot survive him. I did not intend to discuss the person of Magogo, but his latest actions leave me with no option.
A few days ago, he took to social media to lambast people who disapprove of his directive that every Uganda Premier League (UPL) club CEO has to mandatorily undergo his recently created Football Administration and Management Course Level II (FAMACO).
What’s FAMACO in the first place? Magogo claims it equips the CEOs with the current practical know-how and insights needed to transform clubs into professional entities. In his argument, he equates it to practising certification in fields such as law and accounting. What he forgets is that those are professional careers, whereas football is a public good.
On the Fufa website, Magogo says he believes FAMACO is in line with Fufa’s vision, “To become the number one football nation in Africa on and off the field.
”Jokes don’t come much cheaper than this. In fact, he told the last Fufa assembly that for one to compete against him for the Fufa presidency, they ought to have FAMACO certification. Self-centeredness has never had a clearer example. When you dig deep, UPL clubs are cajoled to pay Shs 2 million for every individual or official enrolled in the FAMACO course.
Ironically, the same Fufa that deducts a 10 per cent levy on UPL’s StarTimes sponsorship money under the guise of capacity-building cannot afford to cover FAMACO, which is conducted by Magogo himself as the course designer, teacher, examiner, and certifier.
What’s more, since it would be illogical for a club to enrol one person as CEO for FAMACO, getting just five individuals in the course costs the club Shs 10 million. The irony in all this is that while Magogo is orchestrating the creation of FAMACO and other technical clauses that bar potential opponents from his seat, he has no interest in the ethical side of the game.
This is understandable since Fifa declared him a convicted fraudster in 2019 for enriching himself at the expense of Ugandan sports fans. But beyond that, the football fraternity needs to question the legal standing of this FAMACO stuff because, to the best of my knowledge, it cannot usurp Ugandan laws when they are not ratified in the Constitution or the ministry of Education and Sports regulations.
Besides, there is no study to show that it has any positive impact on the game. Football evolves on a daily basis, and Magogo cannot claim that the FAMACO he studied 10 years ago is still relevant to this day.
In fact, things like FAMACO are what are keeping Ugandan football backwards because Magogo wants to be seen as a thought leader. Everyone has to be at their own level of understanding. Magogo’s boss, Gianni Infantino, the Fifa president, is just a lawyer with a passion for football.
Nothing more, no FAMACO-like junk on his shoulders. But here we have a small god imposing himself on the game to determine who qualifies as CEO. Can a Misagga, a Magogo opponent, pass the FAMACO course when he is a potential threat to the man holding the hot seat? Never!
So, in all this, Magogo even had the audacity to order the UPL board to hold sponsorship funding for clubs like SC Villa because its CEO, William Nkemba, has not enrolled for FAMACO!
I may have my disagreements with Nkemba but this is a seasoned CEO who has managed billions of shillings. So, subjecting him to FAMACO is one way of chasing away independent-minded football investors.
The author is SC Villa president emeritus.