Odilo Ker Football Tournament; Nwoya, Gulu City Through to the Finals

Nwoya District football team secured their spot in the finals of the MTN-sponsored Odilo Ker football tournament after holding Amuru District to a 0-0 draw. The game was closely contested, with Amuru pushing hard throughout and Nwoya relying on a strong defense.

Despite the efforts of Amuru players Stephen Okot Puyol and Peter Komakech, Nwoya’s defense held strong and Alex Siri’s first leg goal was enough to seal the victory for the team, which included many players from the FUFA-sanctioned Regional football League Young Elephants Football Club.

Reflecting on the match, Amuru captain Okot commented, “Our game wasn’t bad, it was just not our day to win. We only wish them all the best in the finals.”

Meanwhile, Nwoya head coach Christopher Okello expressed confidence in his team’s chances in the finals, saying they were “composed, confident and fit” and ready to display their talent against Gulu City. Gulu City earned their spot in the finals after beating Gulu District 5-0, winning 6-0 on aggregate.

In the girls’ category, Agago District will face off against Gulu City in the finals after beating Lamwo 1-0. Agago qualified for the finals on goal difference, while Gulu City secured their spot with an 8-1 aggregate victory over Gulu District.

According to tournament technical administrator Stephen Okot, the tournament has been successful in unearthing hidden football talent in rural communities. Okot plans to call up identified players to a training camp and organize friendly matches to expose them to bigger platforms for potential recruitment by larger football clubs.

The tournament finals will take place on March 12 at Pece Stadium in Gulu City, with the winning teams in both the boys’ and girls’ categories taking home 4 million shillings each, while the runners-up will receive 2 million shillings each.

MTN Uganda’s partnership with the Ker Kwaro Acholi is hinged on an ongoing partnership signed in 2019 but delayed due to the Covid-19 pandemic restrictions.

The agreement entails MTN Uganda working together with the Ker Kwaro leadership to support the chiefdom’s efforts to uplift the socio-cultural welfare of the people in the Acholi sub-region through jointly undertaking health, education and sports initiatives.

MTN Uganda has in the past year undertaken initiatives in health and education in the Acholi region such as the refurbishment and kitting of the Cwero Health Center III Maternity ward in 2019 as well as constructing a classroom block Kuc Ki Gen PEAS high school in Lamwo District.

Erick Katende