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Premier League

UPL clubs to wait a little longer for funds owing to standoff

08:57 WAT 20/03/2020
KCCA FC vs Express FC.
The local league will continue to suffer after the involved parties failed to reach an agreement owing to off-the-pitch issues

The Uganda Premier League (UPL) will wait some more before they receive their sponsorship money from title sponsors StarTimes.

According to Daily Monitor, the title and broadcast sponsors, the federation and the UPL, are embroiled in a pitchside advertising skirmish as well as other areas, including non-consensual third-party partnerships, which are delaying the release of the funds.

The three parties met last week and Fufa was asked to return with a common position before StarTimes could release the pending third-quarter funds toward league operations.

Fufa did return on Tuesday, but along with the UPL board, they feel their final suggestions can only be fully acted upon by StarTimes chief executive Andy Wang, who sits in Nairobi, Kenya, and not the home office in Kampala.

“The board felt it necessary the issues are dear to the league are addressed directly with decision-makers at StarTimes and, therefore, agreed to meet again with the CEO,” a source privy to the events told Daily Monitor.

When contacted about what transpired in the meeting, UPL chief executive Bernard Bainamani said: “We will let you know at an appropriate time.”

StarTimes duly released the first two quarters of July-September and October-December in the first round of the league, but it is the penultimate third quarter for January-March, which was due by February 3, that was withheld.

Both parties, however, remain optimistic that this will be resolved as soon as possible.

StarTimes, Fufa and the UPL in August 2018 entered into a 10-year deal worth $7.2m (Shs27b) to broadcast the competition. For every quarterly payment the UPL receives, 10 per cent goes to Fufa and $20,000 (Shs73m) to referees – through the FA.

Each of the 16 top-flight clubs is entitled to about Shs60m a season, while the rest goes toward league administration and operations.