Moses Muhangi and State Sports Minister Peter Ogwang Discuss Reintroducing Boxing in Schools
The Uganda Boxing Federation (UBF) continues to push for the reintroduction of boxing in secondary schools, a sport that was banned in 2009. Moses Muhangi, the President of UBF, reiterated this plea during a quarterly sports forum held at the National Council of Sports on October 11.
Muhangi questioned the decision to ban boxing in schools in Uganda, pointing out that the sport is played in schools worldwide and even included in the International Schools Federation (ISF) games. He appealed to Peter Ogwang, the State Sports Minister, and Sammy Odong, the Assistant Commissioner of Physical Education in the Ministry of Education, to reconsider the 2009 decision.
The ban on boxing in schools was instituted by Dan Tamwesigire, the former Commissioner of Physical Education, pending proof that the sport was safe for students without any adverse effects. Muhangi stressed the importance of including boxing in the school curriculum, emphasizing that it would provide students with both sporting skills and education for their post-sports careers, which are often short-lived.
Muhangi emphasized that athletes need an education to fall back on after their sports careers, as many are unable to continue in sports beyond 15 years. He pointed to the 2024 Olympics’ education requirements, set by the French government, to justify the need for including the sport in schools.
In response, Minister Ogwang urged Muhangi to collaborate with the ministry to address the concerns and obstacles related to reintroducing boxing in schools. He expressed concern about the potential for students to sustain permanent head injuries and the risk of disciplinary issues in schools.
Minister Ogwang emphasized the need for strict measures to protect student-athletes and the importance of patience in the process. He stressed that the safety of students and the prevention of hooliganism must be a priority.