Kenyan government threatens Fifa with intervention
The Kenyan government has had a long-running battle with Fifa
Fifa and the Kenyan authorities have had a long-running battle over who should run football in the country.
But Sports Minister Otuoma Nyongesa is still not satisfied with the way the sport is run in Kenya.
“We have told Fifa that if they can’t clean up our football, we’ll have to do it ourselves”, he told BBC Sport.
Such action could prompt a Fifa ban since football’s world governing body effectively outlaws any governmental interference in the running of a country’s football federation.
“Intervention is not the same as interference,” Nyongesa argued.
“We cannot have federations running without any sort of transparency or accountability to the public.
“You cannot be responsible for an organisation for ten years and want to [retain the status quo] even though you don’t produce results,” he added.
The Kenyan government has been embroiled in an argument with Fifa for many years over the leadership of the country’s football.
This led to a three-month suspension of the Kenyan Football Federation (KFF) in 2004 after Fifa accused the government of interference.
In 2006, Fifa barred the KFF again for failing to implement signed agreements to resolve the recurrent problems within the federation.
Eventually a group of football administrators set up a rival body, Kenya Football Limited (KFL), which was recognised by Fifa in 2008.
But the government has failed to recognise the KFL, even though the Court of Arbitration for Sports ruled this year that the KFL is the sole arbiter for Kenyan football.
Sports minister Nyongesa insists that government should have a say in the matter because Kenyan teams represent the country.
“When you go out there, you carry our flag,” he said.
“When you go out there and perform [badly], it brands us in a negative light,” he concluded.
Kenyan football was recently plunged into further dismay when eight football fans died in a stampede during last month’s league match between AFC Leopards and Gor Mahia.