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Alur Kingdom Turns to Football to Retain Girls in School :: Uganda Radionetwork
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Alur Kingdom Turns to Football to Retain Girls in School

According to the available information from the Alur kingdom secretariat, primary school Completion rate for boys stands at 47 percent and 27 percent for girls with an overall completion rate of 37 percent for both boys and girls.
Alur King, Phillip Olarker Rauni III is expected to grace the football tournament

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The second edition of the Alur King's Cup, locally known as the "Kopu Paa Min Ubimu" football tournament, will place a significant focus on girls' retention in schools, aiming to address the issue of low primary school completion rates. This year's tournament, held under the theme "promoting the education and retention of girls in schools," is scheduled to take place at Bar Okoro Stadium in Paidha Town Council, Zombo District on September 30, 2023. 

Statistics from the Alur Kingdom secretariat reveal that the primary school completion rate for boys is 47 percent and only 27 percent for girls, resulting in an overall completion rate of 37 percent for both genders. Rony Rupiny, the head of the program at the Alur Kingdom secretariat, points out that while the introduction of the Universal Primary Education (UPE) program in 1997 led to increased enrollment of learners in primary schools within the kingdom, pupil retention, especially for girls, has remained a significant challenge. 

He emphasizes that besides the football tournament, all other activities of the kingdom this year are geared towards addressing this issue.

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The annual women's football tournament, initiated by the kingdom last year, draws participants from the four regions of the kingdom, namely Okoro, Padyere, Jonam, and DR Congo. This year's tournament will be played in a gala format and is expected to be held in a single day. 

Sam Kumakech, the Director of Sports, Information, and Youth Affairs at the Alur Kingdom urges the Alur community to prioritize girls' education, emphasizing that women's empowerment is crucial for the kingdom's development.

“Kopu Paa Min Ubimu is a tournament purely meant for women and girls. Alur kingdom is using this to advocate for specifically the voice of the young girls to stay in school until they complete their studies,” Kumakech noted. 

Colleens Pimer, the Minister of Gender in the Alur Kingdom, attributes the low primary school completion rate among girls to issues like poor parenting and cultural practices that often favor educating boys over girls. 

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The reigning champions of the tournament are the women's team from the Padyere region, who emerged victorious during the inaugural edition held last year.

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