What next after Transition Committee tenure ends?
Football Kenya Federation (FKF) Premier League, National Super League and Division One League community clubs without a shirt sponsor face tough times following the withdrawal of grants by the outgoing FKF Transition Committee whose mandate has elapsed.
The 2022/2023 season is set to kick off on September 19, which is ahead of its original August 27 date, with the Committee accordingly advising all clubs to seek facilitation elsewhere through a communiqué.
“The FKF Transition Committee would like to thank all stakeholders for the support it has received in the just concluded league and in its operations. As you are aware the committee having agreed with clubs was advancing financial grants to KPL, NSL and Division 1 clubs,”
The communiqué signed by the committee’s Head of Secretariat Linda Oguttu read: ”With the mandate of the FKF Transition Committee coming to an end, we would like to inform clubs and stakeholders that the decision on whether or not to advance the same in the next season will rest with the team that will take over from the committee,’’
It added: “In the meantime, the committee would like to advise clubs to start looking for alternative funding for the next season. We wish you all the best in the next league.”
While the committee has stated that it has recommended that the clubs continue receiving the same, it remains to be seen what will be the next course of action by Sports Cabinet Secretary Amina Mohammed who enacted the committee and especially given that most community clubs are not financially viable to compete in the league. Granted, the clubs which are already financially crippled will have no choice but to look for a new sponsor if they are to honour the league.
During the 2021/22 season, Mathare United, a community club participating in the top-tier league, found itself at crossroads due to lack of finances which led to missing three consecutive league matches and was subsequently relegated to the National Super League (NSL) by the committee.
Some of the community teams which may face a similar predicament in the new season include Sofapaka, Wazito, Nairobi City Stars, Kakamega Homeboyz and Kariobangi Sharks most of which rely on their owners to survive.
In contrast, the country’s senior and most successful clubs Gor Mahia and AFC Leopards are lucky to have secured new sponsorship after their previous one in betting firm Betsafe terminated its partnership with one year left on the deal.
Betsafe and the two clubs had signed a three-year shirt sponsorship deal worth Sh270 million for both teams cumulatively two years ago.
While Gor unveiled Betafriq as their main sponsors ahead of the new season, Leopards got a shot in the arm after landing on Betika as their new shirt sponsor in a partnership agreement worth Sh 195 million meant to last for the next three years effective August 1.
Before the new deal, Betsafe and the two clubs had signed a three-year shirt sponsorship deal worth Sh270 million for both teams cumulatively two years ago.
Betsafe and the two clubs signed a three-year shirt sponsorship deal worth Sh270 million for both teams cumulatively two years ago.