Last weekend, North East and Eastern regions U-17 boys’ and girls’ football teams faced off in the third regional games of the 2016 Airtel Rising Stars tournament played at the Soroti Municipal Stadium and attended by residents of Soroti and surrounding districts, Airtel Uganda staff, members of FUFA as well as local leaders led by His Worship Richard Ochom, the Mayor of Kumi Municipality.
The games that took place on Friday, Saturday and Sunday saw Olila girls defeat Serere Girls 1-0 and Light SS boys defeat Kumi 1-0 in the North East regional finals.
The Tororo derby game of the Boys Eastern regional finals saw Galaxy defeat True vine 1-0 while Highway Sironko defeated St Stephen –Jinja 1-0 in the girls Eastern regional finals
The winners of these regions walked away with trophies, certificates, balls, kits and a cash prize of UGX 1,000,000 each. The first runners up also took home trophies, certificates, and a cash prize of UGX 500,000 each.
Speaking during the award giving ceremony, Airtel Uganda Brand and Assets Executive, Mr. Musa Mayanja thanked all the participating teams, players and coaches of the North East and Eastern regions for their dedication and hard work throughout the tournament. He thanked also the residents of Soroti because they came in large numbers to support the youths.
“Over the past five seasons, we have seen many former ARS players go on to play for different clubs in Uganda as well as the national team. We are proud to see that the Airtel Rising Stars initiative has established itself as a strong feeder program for the national team” he added
His Worship Richard Ochom, the Mayor of Kumi Municipality and Guest of Honor congratulated the winning teams and thanked Airtel for the job they have done of promoting football in Uganda.
“It is because of football that I am where I am today. This is a game which unites everyone and teaches them responsibility and teamwork. I encourage our youths to be disciplined while playing the game because you can reach far” he said
“The ARS initiative is one of the ways in which we can instill qualities like discipline and hard work into our youths. I am proud to be associated with such an initiative,” he added
The soccer talent search program will end in a fashionable football camp for select top talents who will emerge from the respective regions and will be mentored by professional football coaches and players.