The head of Uganda’s delegation in Tokyo, Beatrice Ayikoru has confirmed the disappearance of Julius Ssekitooleko, 20, a weightlifter from the team’s training camp in Izumisano city for the Olympics games.
Ssekitooleko was supposed to take a daily PCR Covid test but didn’t show up and a search at his hotel room proved futile as he was nowhere to be seen.
In a statement released on Friday afternoon, Ayikoru said Ssekitoleko,one of the nine members of the Ugandan team who have been staying in Izumisano — a city in Osaka Prefecture in western Japan — since mid-June had not qualified for the games and was due to return home.
“It had been anticipated that mr Ssekitoleko would qualify for the games, however, he didn’t make the quota as informed by the International Weightlifting Federation on July,5,2021. He together with his coach were due to return to Uganda on July,20, 201,”Ayikoru said.
She however expressed concern that despite regular emphasis during briefings while in Uganda and in Tokyo on respecting immigration regulations in Japan and not leaving the camp without authorization; the weightlifter had decided to violate the same.
“Our team in Izumisano is cooperating with Osaka authorities to try and locate Mr.Ssekitoleko. We shall keep you posted on any further developments is this regard,” Ayikoru noted.