Para-swimmer Kukundakwe revels in real stars award glory

Para-swimmer Husnah Kukundakwe has now shifted focus to her classwork at Aga Khan High School now that it is third term.

This is following Kukundakwe’s busy year in the swimming pool internationally. In August, she was at the Commonwealth Games in Birmingham, before flying to Konya in Turkey, to compete in the fifth edition of the Islamic Solidarity Games.

While there, Kukundakwe emerged as the most decorated Ugandan athlete with two golds, three silvers and one bronze of the 10 that Uganda won.

It is on the back of that feat, that Kukundakwe was a highlight at the Real Stars Sports Awards on September 6, winning the monthly gong for best swimmer in August. 

To her, this recognition and award is not only a huge boost for her to keep working hard, in order to reach greater heights. But it is a milestone to a more all-inclusive society. Aged 15, Kukundakwe was born with one complete arm. And because of that, life has been a challenge, always being a talking point among crowds, because she is different from many other people.

Yet, the Real Stars award has demystified that. 

“It is her success as a swimmer that was the merit. And nothing to do with whether she has special needs or not. It is a sign of how Uganda is progressing for the better. So many children out there cannot come out to compete, because they have some physical impairment, and they will be judged for something beyond their making, which is wrong,” Hashima Batamuriza, the mother of Kukundakwe, said.

As Batamuriza, who also doubles as her daughter’s manager, expressed her gratitude to Real Stars Sports Agency for the recognition. In fact, Batamuriza believes that Kukundakwe’s success and recognition will go a long way in inspiring other disabled children to aspire.

In addition, such accolades boost athletes’ confidence. And it is unsurprising that Kukundakwe’s celebrity status is growing. But Batamuriza insists that Kukundakwe remains a child. However, Kukundakwe has that self-esteem about her, because of her swimming exploits. She speaks so intelligently. One could think she is an adult.


© 2016 Observer Media Ltd