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STATEMENT: Julius Ssekitoleko

Following the reported disappearance of a Ugandan weight lifter from the pre-Olympic training camp in Japan, the international equality, diversity and equal opportunity in sport charity, equitysport have made a statement and appeal to the media.



A Ugandan weight lifter, Julius Ssekitoleko who traveled to Japan in the hopes of competing in the Olympics has been reported missing from his hotel. The athlete failed to show for a required coronavirus test on Friday.


Whilst this story is bound to attract interest from the international media and Olympic fans, it is important to recognise that these disappearances are often complex in nature. We implore the media, pundits, commentators and social media users to refrain from reinforcing false stereotypes about the Global South (developing world) in their reporting and commentary.


The dominant narrative adopted in these situations often depict the Global South as monolithic entity in perpetual crisis, devastated by poverty, conflict, disease, hunger and other forms of human suffering. Whilst these realities do exist, they are just one part of a wider reality.


We encourage international media outlets and interested parties, particularly those based in the Global North, to await the full facts and context of the reported disappearance before projecting broad-stroke and sweeping misrepresentations, prejudices, and outdated stereotypes onto the situation.

equitysport is a UK-registered charity (1189559) that exists to advance and promote equality, diversity and equal opportunity in and through global sport. Through free-form development, targeted advocacy, vocational training and education programmes the charity seeks an inclusive and equitable sporting ecosystem that lives up to the true values of sport.


Notes to Editors: For interviews or further comment, please contact the team via: campaigns@equitysport.org

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