FIFA bans Kenya over govt interference
The world soccer governing body FIFA on Thursday evening suspended the Football Kenya Federation over what it termed as government interference in running the sport in the country.
FIFA president Gianni Infantino confirmed the latest development during the 18th FIFA Congress videoconference meeting held on Thursday, February 24, at 6:00 pm (EAT).
“We had to suspend two of our member associations — Kenya and Zimbabwe. Both for government interference in the activities of the football associations of these associations. These associations are suspended from footballing activities with immediate effect and they know what needs to be done for them to be re-admitted or for the suspension to be lifted,” Gianni said.
FKF, under the stewardship of ousted president Nick Mwendwa, was removed from office by the Kenyan government in November 2021 due to alleged misappropriation of funds.
There have been numerous court battles between the government and the federation with most of the cases yet to be concluded.
On November 11, 2021, Sports Cabinet Secretary Amb. Amina Mohamed appointed a caretaker committee to manage FKF affairs and that prompted an immediate reaction from the ousted office, the latest being the letter that was written by FKF CEO Barry Otieno to CAF stating that they were unable to host the Africa Women's Nations Cup Qualifier against Uganda.
The Justice (Rtd) Aaron Ringera-led committee has overseen the running of football activities in the country but as it seems, all this is null and void following FIFA's latest move.
The committee whose mandate ends on May 11, 2022, has said that it will hand over power to a new FKF office with elections expected in April.
During the FIFA Congress, the Zimbabwe Football Association was also suspended following government interference in the running of the sport in the country.