Kampala, Uganda | THE INDEPENDENT | Abdu Karim Lubega’s dream of qualifying for the Paralympic Games has been delayed after he failed to secure funds for surgery.
Lubega was part of Uganda’s delegation that travelled to Morocco in February 2020 to participate in the All Africa Paralympic Games, which was also the Paralympic qualifier for athletics, blind ball, javelin and long jump among other sports.
He was disqualified by the classifiers at the event claiming that he didn’t have a class he belonged to qualify for the Paralympic games. The athlete has an improperly developed right without fingers, which affects the movement of the elbow while running.
Lubega says that he has failed to secure more than 6 Million Shillings funds for surgery.
He however says he has not given up but kept training with the normal athletes to gain form.
James Senkungu, the National team coach of the Paralympic team says they have made all the efforts to help Lubega, but the response from the public is lukewarm. He says that they went to Mubende Rehabilitation Centre and were asked to pay 2 million shillings, which they are yet to secure.
Senkungu says Lubega is a good athlete who nearly clocked the time of the Paralympic star David Emong in Morocco.
The Para-athletics classification is used to determine the kind of disabilities each athlete has.
The athletes are designated under classes and each class has a code consisting of a letter and two digits, with the latter being either “T” or “F” (indicating track or field events) and the number representing the level of physical ability. T/F11 – 13 is for visual impairment, T/F20 intellectual impairment, T/F31 – 34 movement disorder and cerebral palsy and T/F40 – 41 for dwarfism among others. Lubega fell in the T/F category, which includes people with impairments on their arms.