Tusker, Gor continental matches doubtful following FKF dissolution
Uncertainty surrounds continental fixtures involving Kenyan representatives Tusker and Gor Mahia early next month.
The dilemma follows the move by Sports Cabinet Secretary Amina Mohamed three weeks ago to dissolve Football Kenya Federation (FKF) which has in turn petitioned CAF detailing its inability to prepare the two teams for their respective assignments.
While Gor are scheduled to meet AS Otoho of Congo Brazzaville, Tusker are due to face CF Sfaxien of Tunisia in CAF Confederation Cup matches.
In a letter authored by FKF Secretary Barry Otieno and which was also copied to Gor Mahia vice-chairman as well as CAF Secretary Veron Mosengo Omba, the Kenya governing body said its hands are tied ever since Amina disbanded it over allegations of embezzlement of Millions of Shillings meant for football development.
Otieno said the federation’s operations have been paralyzed as staff cannot access the headquarters at Kandanda House in Kasarani.
“We wish to inform you that on November 11, 2021, the Cabinet Secretary for Sports (read Mohamed) released a press statement, disbanding FKF and installing an FKF Caretaker committee to oversee all football activities in the country,’’ said Otieno.
He said Mohamed also ordered for the total lock down of the FKF premises, thus denying all federation staff access to the office, a situation that has completely incapacitated the federation’s operations.
“In light of the foregoing, and the existing government directive, taking over all footballing activities, the federation is regrettably unable to independently plan and successfully execute the upcoming CAF Confederation Cup match between Gor Mahia FC vs AS Otoho FC scheduled for December 5, 2021, in Nairobi as well as the fixture between Tusker and CS Sfaxien.
He also raised concern on alleged intimidation by the sports ministry and informed CAF as much.
“Further, as a precaution, and in consideration of the safety and well-being of the FKF staff, who continue to be intimidated by a section of the Caretaker Committee members, the federation has formally informed CAF on the football situation in the country and FKF’s challenge in organizing the aforementioned fixture.
“The Federation will continue to keep CAF informed on developments regarding the football situation in Kenya.
In a related development, reports indicate that world governing body Fifa and Confederation of African Football (CAF) do not recognize the football caretaker committee formed by Mohamed and as such they cannot acknowledge the participation of the two teams in events held under its aegis and especially if the government is in charge of the game in Kenya.
Tusker, the Kenyan champions who had been entered in the Africa Champions League were eliminated by Zamalek of Egypt and were subsequently demoted to the CAF Champion League where they shall meet CS Sfaxien of Tunisia.
As for Gor who were representing the country in the CAF Cup, they beat Sudan’s Al Ahly Merowe without breaking much sweat and are penciled to meet AS Otoho D’Pyo of Democratic Republic of Congo in the second round.
En-route to the stage, Gor beat Merowe 3-1 in first round match 3-1- at New Suez Stadium in Egypt but the Sudanese could not honour the return leg in Nairobi with CAF allowing K’ogalo the ticket to the next stage.
Meanwhile, Oloho dropped to the second competition after losing 4-2 9pn aggregate against Petro de Luanda of Angola in the Champions League play-offs.
Otoho drew the first round meeting 2-1 at Stade Alphonse Massambo Debat but the Angolan side won the return match 2-0 at Estadio 11 Novembro.
On learning that Gor had been drawn against Otoho, the team’s tactician Mark Harrison exuded confidence that hios charges were in a avantage position to eliminate the Congolese and progress further.