Former Uganda body building champion Ivan Byekwaso is reportedly dead.
While full details of his death are yet to be known, Byekwaso who was in 2015 named Mr Universe by the International Natural Bodybuilding Association (INBA) is said to have died Wednesday at the age of 41, in Germany where he relocated. We bring you some of his most memorable quotes.
On being announced Mr Natural Universe
There are days I would go without food or having to worry when my children had been sent away from school for non-payment of school fees. That is what caused the tears from my eyes as the Uganda National Anthem was played and the Uganda flag was displayed on the screens.
On international sports
Everyone goes through challenges but when I go to some of these competitions, I cannot help but envy some of my competitors who have sponsors right from the shoes, all the way to their head gear.
Many people are mean and self-centred. Many people have used me for their own benefit. I am thankful that I am God-fearing and I maintain my composure.
My father was Idi Amin’s driver, so he did not have money to support me in school after the regime had fallen.
Football earned me a place in school, on scholarships. I needed pocket money so I would moonlight as a builder at construction sites
I used to play football with Kabalagala Rangers. It was not paying well. I would be paid Shs3,000 for big games. Most of the time, we would play without pay.
On body building
When I went to a gym for the first time, the trainer told me I had strong legs and if I worked on my upper body, I would become Mr Kampala.
I met a white guy, a reveller at Al’s Bar, who gave me a secret behind bodybuilding. He told me not to tell it to anyone unless I am retiring but it has worked for me
I eat seven times a day. When I have to compete, I go into camp for seclusion and I keep away from things like salt and sugar.
On love and sports
I would not advise any sportsman to marry. It is hard to find a woman who can understand you. I need to concentrate on my training. Now, I can achieve my dreams without interruption.
The mother of my children left me when I did not have money but I live with my children.
Women make sportsmen lose the fitness and stamina. That is why in the western world, sportsmen are put in camps away from the ladies.
We all have ‘take-aways’ but it is not something I put my mind on. I am now born-again and the Bible says the devil is found in women.
I have not made any money (out of sports) but my efforts have earned me fame. I was a nobody but I am now somebody.