Ssekitoleko, a Ugandam weightlifter was scheduled to fly back to the country with his coach after failing to make the quota for the final Olympics in Japan.
He however disappeared leaving a note in his hotel room saying he wanted to live and work in Japan.
The weightlifter attributed this to the dismal conditions back in Uganda.
However, the news went viral with different global media agencies publishing the story. Soon the police in Izumisano started mounting a search for him.
The Uganda Olympic Committee worked hand in hand with the Japanese authorities. They located Ssekitoleko took him to the Ugandan embassy.
Maurice Kirya however feels that instead of handling Ssekitoleko as a criminal, authorities should go to the root of what made him do this, poverty.
The Busabala singer said that Ssekitoleko’s situation is just a mirror of what other professional athletes go through in the country.
“We should not treat Julius Ssekitoleko like a criminal, he is not. This is an indication or representation of the reality of Ugandan professional athletes. It’s not the first time it has happened. It won’t be the last one it’s happening in many other professions too, for good reason.” Maurice Kirya posted on his Facebook page.
Where the problem stems from
Ssekitoleko is not the first athlete to disappear after reaching a country where they feel that their lives will be better.
Just a few weeks back, Ugandan rugby player James Odong went missing in Monaco. This was during the Rugby Cranes Olympic qualifiers that the pandemic cut short.
Many African players disappear, especially those from countries plagues by wars, famine and poverty. This comes when they go to different countries for participation where they feel they could flourish.
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