Ssekabuza, the little giant coming of age

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Ssekabuza has largely grown in the shadows of senior coaches.

Coach David Mutono is typically a calm man on Gaddafi’s bench. In contrast, Felix Ssekabuza, his assistant often plays the devil’s advocate. Frequently arrowing from his seat to pass a word to the referee to express dissent, barks at a misfiring player or simply just engaging in theatrics on the sideline.

However, he presents a different demeanor when in charge; Calm, composed but shrewd in his operations.

Ssekabuza has largely grown in the shadows of senior coaches. Starting as an assistant to coach Allan Kabonge at fourth division side Kisubi United in 2012, Ssekabuza has gone on to become a key component in many backrooms.

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For a decade and over, he has worked with senior coaches like George Lutalo, Charles Mbabazi, Paul Mukatabala and Shafik Bisaso.

Ssekabuza’s first role as head coach was at Kiboga Young (now Mbale Heroes), where he guided them from the fourth league to the Buganda Regionals in 2017. His smooth ascendancy was temporarily halted by Alex Isabirye’s Kyetume in the promotion playoff to the Fufa Big League the following year.

Nevertheless, he succeeded in 2018 by beating Katwe United to take the Kiboga side to the second division.

Unfortunately, his dream to coach in the Big League was delayed after Kiboga was sold to businessman Wycliffe Mwambu who later rebranded it to Mbale Heroes.

Ssekabuza had a stint as an assistant at Plascon in 2019 but left for Booma in 2021. That same year, he coached Ntugasaze to Buganda Regional League as a part-time head coach.

Last year, he joined David Mutono as his assistant at Gaddafi where he is still active. However, his former team Ntugasaze came calling at a time of need.

He led them to win the Katonga Group league before beating Simba from Ssezibwa Group to be crowned Buganda Regional champions 2023/24.

That victory granted him a chance to play Kampala Region winners Proline for the only promotion berth to the Big League reserved for Central region.

Ssekabuza is walking to the top.

Despite losing 2-1 to Proline in the first leg in Kiboga, goals from Michael Kimera and Calvin Emayu in the second leg on Thursday secured a 3-2 aggregate win, allowing Ssekabuza’s team to advance to the Big League at the expense of the 2019 Uganda Cup winners.

“My simple strategy is to play attacking football because I don’t believe in conservative approaches; I want my players to express themselves so that I get the best out of them,” Ssekabuza told Daily Monitor after qualifying.

Long journey

The year 2024 will be a memorable year for Ssekabuza. He made headlines in schools football by winning the Mukono regional championships with St. Julian. The school went further to surprise national giants by winning the Uganda Secondary Schools Sports Association (USSSA) football championship.

“I believe I’m now ready to step into the big shoes and take charge of a team as a head coach in full capacity,” the Caf B licensed coach asserts.

Besides the league and schools, Ssekabuza is a common figure in the Masaza Cup. He won titles in 2014, 2015 and 2018 with Bisaso at Gomba and Singo, respectively. This year, he is aiming for more glory as head coach of Buweekula in the same competition.

Ntugasaze has joined the 2024/25 betPawa Big League season together with Myda (Eastern), Buhimba Saints (Bunyoro) and Paidha Black Angels from Zombo.


Name – Felix Ssekabuza

Current club – Ntagasaze, Gaddafi and Buweekula

2024 achievements – Champions Mukono region Schools, champions USSSA football (with St. Julian, Mukono), Buganda Regional League champions, Promoted Ntagasaze to Fufa Big League

Inter-regional league playoffs results

Myda 3-1 Busei

Paidha Black Angels 2-0 Northern Gateway

Ntoda 0-1 Buhimba Saints United

Proline 2-3 Ntugasaze

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