Kenya in race against time

Thursday, October 13th, 2022 08:50 | By
President William Ruto (centre), then the Deputy President, is flanked by FKF boss Nick Mwendwa as he addresses Harambee Stars players after a past AFCON Qualifier against Comoros. PD/ Rodgers Ndegwa

The government is set to write to world football governing body Fifa this week, to allow for the sanctions to be lifted and the sport resume officially.

The global body suspended Kenya from all football activities in February following the decision of out going Sports Cabinet Secretary Amina Mohamed to disband the federation over allegations of misuse of funds and replaced it with a Caretaker Committee which did not go down well with Fifa.

Facing sanctions

In a letter to the Sports Minister, Fifa urged her to allow the federation access their secretariat at the Kasarani Goal Project or risk facing sanctions and the threat was made real in February when Fifa president Gianni Infantino announced the decision at a congress meeting where he cited government interference.

““The FIFA council suspended Kenya on February 24th with immediate effect due to third party interference in particular the take over of football by a Caretaker Committee appointed by the government which is a serious violation of the FIFA statutes.

“It is therefore recommended that the Congress confirms the suspension of the Football Kenya Federation enabling the council to lift the suspension immediately and as soon as the pertinent requirements have been fulfilled,” said Infantino.

Premier leaugue clubs

With the Transition Committee’s tenure coming to an end on Saturday, it was anticipated that the normalcy would be back especially after 90 per cent of the premier league clubs declared that they would not take part in any league that is not sanctioned by Fifa.

The Transition Committee which already gave Amina a report and their recommendations on Kenyan football a fortnight ago was formed in May to continue with the mandate of the Caretaker Committee who were only gazetted for six months

Embattled Football Kenya Federation (FKF) boss Nick Mwendwa also announced on October 1 during the final of the inaugural Elite Cup pre-season tournament, that the new league that would be recognised by Fifa was to kick-off at the end of October, however, the kick-off may have to be pushed further if a commitment letter to Fifa from the government is not made available.

Long footaball impasse

Reliable government source fidclosed that the letter was to be written last week after senior government officials had approved it, but it remains unclear as to why it may have delayed. However, the source says all is well and believes that it would be writen before the end of this week to start the process of ending the long football impase that has lasted for about a year.

“Kenya know what needs to be done for them to be re-admitted or for the suspension to be lifted,” said Infantino. Mwendwa last month stormed the locked Secretariat offices for the first time since he was ousted in november 11, but the facility is yet to start operating.

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