On October 12, management of Mandela National Stadium, Namboole advised Ugandan pop star Robert Kyagulanyi popularly known as Bobi Wine to reschedule his Kyarenga music concert on grounds that the stadium had been booked to host a weeding on October 20 when the show was slated to take place.
To that effect, the stadium manager, Mr Jamil Ssewanyana, wrote to the Kyadondo East MP saying the stadium which he had requested to hold his much anticipated music show had been booked for a wedding reception and an Athletics event that runs from October 20th to October 26.
“Kindly note the stadium has two pre-booked events namely Uganda Athletic Federation workshop from 15th October to 26th October and a wedding ceremony on 20th October 2018”, the letter read in part.
Surprisingly, there was no wedding reception as claimed by the managers.
A section of some Ugandans took to internet to express their disappointment and anger asking the management of the stadium and FUFA officials to explain.
One of the social media users, Samson Kasumba-Mulun wanted to know whose wedding it was and if anybody attended it.
“A wedding so we are told stopped a concert from happening yesterday at Namboole. Whose wedding was that? I am asking those of you who were at Namboole yesterday for the wedding. These are things we journalists must stay on so we inform the public. If Namboole lied we shall know,” he wrote on twitter.
In response to Mr Kasumba’s questions, Wako Joel wrote saying: “Am sure the @OfficialFUFA folks were used like toilet paper to deny and frustrate @HEBobiwine to host his event. What will they tell Ugandans when the @NRMOnline gov’t is no more?”
One Muha also wrote: “They told us there will be a wedding at Namboole on this day. Those attending, how is it going?”
For a one Okello Bonny Bongo Cana, he needed to know the truth “because that’s what shall set us free.”
“The Administration is Just serving the regime interests they just act Political shame on them and they should know Ugandans aren’t stupid as they assume, we are watching actually me I just wish them DEATH because people around M7 think they will serve him forever we shall wait for you,” tweeted Blackman Anthony.
Bobi Wine who also seemed frustrated also accused the stadium management and Federation of Uganda Football Associations (FUFA) of being used by the regime to play “dirty games.”
“To Namboole stadium admins, FUFA officials used in such dirty games, know that Ugandans are watching. No matter how much pressure you get from the regime, always do your job without fear or favour. Positions you hold are public ones and you must never use them against the people,” Bobi Wine wrote on his timeline.
This was after Mr Sewanyana, in another letter dated October 19, wrote informing Bobi Wine and his promoters to seek alternative date saying they had received a complaint from their stakeholder in sports development- “that raised the following pertinent concerns of national charter.”
This followed a letter dated October 17, in which FUFA Chief executive officer Edgar Watson Suubi noted that the stadium is under ‘red flag’ and that Confederation of African Football [CAF] was keenly observing the conditions as key competition factor for the forthcoming 2019 qualifier football match.
“It has come to the Federations notice that Mandela Stadium management has entered into an agreement to have a public event take place on November 9, 2018 within the stadium. In our opinion, any public event within the International football match period put the Stadium into an unacceptable standard to detriment CAF docking off points from the Uganda Cranes for the upcoming,” Mr Suubi wrote.
Following the complaint by FUFA, Nomaboole stadium resolved to halt the agreement they had entered into with Emma promotions and marketing agency.
According to the agreement letter signed by Ssewanyana Emma Sserugo and the concert promoter, the concert had been cleared to be hosted on November 9, 2018.