Fate of disbanded FKF to be out ‘today’

Thursday, April 28th, 2022 07:44 | By
Sports CS Amina Mohammed PHOTO/Courtesy

Kenya football stakeholders are likely to receive the landmark ruling by a Nairobi court today as to whether the disbandment of the Football Kenya Federation (FKF) by the government was tenable or not.

The watershed pronouncement by Milimani Court was supposed to have been delivered tomorrow but is likely to be brought forward to today since Friday will be a national holiday in honour of retired President Mwai Kibaki who passed on a week ago.

And either way, the court shall rule, it will have a major impact on the Kenyan game that has been on tenterhooks since March 30 2022, when world football governing body Fifa suspended Kenya over what it described as unwarranted interference in the game which is against its statutes.

Fifa cracked the whip four months after Sports Cabinet Secretary Amina Mohammed ejected FKF led by its President Nick Mwendwa over alleged graft including failure to account for the Sh244million meant for Harambee Stars’ participation in the 2019 Africa Cup of Nations (AFCON) in Egypt.

Amina went ahead to lock the FKF secretariat out of Kandanda House premises in Kasarani, which is now being guarded by uniformed police officers.

A spot-check by People Daily at the secretariat office block which is located about one kilometre from the Kasarani main stadium, found it with overgrown bushes, an unkempt compound and peeling paint works.

Since Kenya’s banishment by Fifa, who are the major financiers of their affiliates, Kenya’s football has been in quandary with most FKF Premier League lacking finances to sustain their activities.

Overgrown bushes

The matters have been aggravated by below-par standards of officiating matches. There are claims that some match officials, who do not have Fifa’s backing following the sanctions, are being bribed to fix matches.

Perhaps to rub salt into the injury, there are neither coaches nor referees training courses in Kenya which have led to the dwindling football standards.

This is besides the limited subsidy from the Caretaker Committee which has failed to cede to laid down rules set by Fifa for Kenya to be readmitted to the international football.

A few days after its enactment, the committee chaired by retired appellate judge Aaron Ringera had pledged a financial allocation of Sh800,000 to each team participating in the top tier league.

The allotment would later be reduced to Sh300,000 but even then, the teams last received the grant in January 2022.

So serious is the incapacitation by most financially-strapped teams that, Mathare United skipped a league match against Bandari last weekend and they are likely to continue with this trend should they fail to get a sponsor.

Among the rules Fifa set to lift the suspension of Kenya is the retention of laissez-faire by the government towards dealing with football activities and the dissolution of the caretaker committee that is currently governing the sport pending fresh elections.

The sports ministry received a court injunction not to prosecute Mwendwa over the alleged financial atrocities after it dropped corruption charges against the embattled official.

Nick Mwendwa was initially arrested on November 12 2021, spent a weekend behind bars but was released on a bail of Sh4 million as investigations continued.

He was rearrested along Kiambu Road on November 26 as he drove to the city centre and taken to the Directorate of Criminal Investigations for grilling. This was barely a day after he was set free by Nairobi magistrate Wandia Nyamu

More on Sports