Hooligans to face 10-year jail term under the new law

Police escort referees out of the field after chaos erupted during a match in Jinja.

NATIONAL SPORTS ACT 2023 Hooligans to face 10-year jail term under the new law

Fred Mwambu 15:51 - 25.08.2023

The new law is intended to curb the rise in hooliganism and chaos at sports events. Culprits face up to ten years in prison for causing chaos that disrupts events.

Hooligans at sports events face up to ten years in prison under the new National Sports Act.

President Yoweri Museveni signed the bill into law earlier in the week and among the measures therein is a move to curb hooliganism and chaos at sporting events.

Football was the most affected sporting discipline, with a number of cases reported in the StarTimes Uganda Premier League.

Record-16 league champions SC Villa was grossly affected by the vice after losing the trophy despite the fact that they collected the most number of points on the field of play.

The club later on banned one of their fans James Kalibaala for life following numerous acts of hooliganism and indiscipline.


“A person shall not commit an act of violence or hooliganism at a sports event or sports competition organised by a national sports association or a national sports federation,” section 64 of the new laws states.

It describes a hooligan as a person with the intent to disrupt an event, one who destroys property, injures another, disturbs peace, or intimidates a match official or participant, among others.

The law has provided for a sentence of up to ten years or a fine or a fine not exceeding shs.9.6 million or both.

“…is liable, on conviction, to a fine not exceeding four hundred and eighty currency points or to a term of imprisonment not exceeding ten years, or both,” the law provides.

In addition, the culprits may be ordered to cover the costs of the losses and be banned from attending any sports events for a period not exceeding three years.

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