Take action against match-fixing scams
Revelations of match-fixing in Football Kenya Federation (FKF) Premier League matches have cast a blot on the sport, raising questions about the integrity of the results in the top-tier league.
The latest revelations have left sports enthusiasts angry and worried over the steps the world governing body, Fifa, is likely to take against Kenya as far the application of its slogan “For the Good of the Game’ is concerned.
But it is encouraging that three suspects were arrested while trying to fix the match between Nairobi City Stars and Stars and Sofapaka scheduled for the past weekend in Nairobi.
It is, however, shocking that the suspects had the audacity to brag to law enforcers how they are were influential and even attempted to bribe police officers by offering them Sh1 million bibe while boldly declaring that they had infiltrated several clubs, all of which had accepted to play along.
Preliminary reports indicate that the suspects were arrested at the weekend after falling into the trap of the club’s former footballer who has himself been implicated in a similar crime in the past but had decided to reform.
It is important, now that this information has come to light, that authorities do all in their power to bring back integrity in the sport, if Kenyan football is to grow and become competitive.
We also take this opportunity to laud the club’s Chief Executive Officer for blowing the whistle against the fixers, culminating in the arrest of the suspects who have infiltrated the cartels that are hell-bent on making Kenyan football the laughing stock of the region.
The suspects including a Russian, a Ugandan and their Kenyan accomplice should face the full force of the law if they are found culpable. Only in this way will they act as a deterrent to persons with similar tendencies and especially this time when the government has declared a zero tolerance to corruption in sports.
To this end, it would be appropriate to also bring to book players who have been implicated in the scandal.
The three culprits may end up walking free again since there are no clear laws against the vice. Just like the war on doping has been made a priority by the government to ensure free and fair competition, match fixing should also be declared as a crime in the country’s law.