FKF planning for life without SG Otieno after CAF ban
Football Kenya Federation (FKF) is planning how to run operations without banned Secretary General Barry Otieno, who will be out of office for six months.
The federation is also pondering on the next move with Harambee Stars Team Manager, Ronny Oyando who is also on a similar ban period with the CEO.
The duo have been locked out of office by the Confederation of African Football (CAF) following the dispute that emerged during the African Cup of Nations (AFCON) qualifiers against Comoros last year.
In the match, CAF says Otieno tore Covid-19 results which showed four Stars players had tested positive, a report he claims to be false and ill motivated.
“I didn’t tear anything. What I differed with was giving us results just before the kickoff having already released the match day lineup. I argued that if there were players within the team that had tested positive, then it was fair to call of the match as they had interacted with the rest,” explained Otieno, further revealing the referee in charge requested the match to go on as planned before despite the conundrum.
Otieno further says scientifically there was no way the said players would have tested positive few hours after arriving in Comoros, and later testing negative soon after jetting back in Nairobi.
“We have respected CAF’s decision because we are law abiding, and of course there was no leeway to appeal. We have however written to CAF explaining our frustration about how the whole issue was handled, exposing the reality COVID-19 could be weaponised to fail visiting teams.
“How comes all players were fine on Saturday as we left Nairobi for Comoros, aboard a chartered flight only for our four top players to test positive hours before the match? Moreover, we tested again after arriving in Nairobi just a day after the match and none tested positive. Our players who play abroad also travelled immediately, and none of them tested positive in their respective club’s tests. So how can we believe the tests conducted in Comoros…” paused Otieno, reffering to expert’s guidelines that have informed protocals on the virus.
Citizen Digital understands captain Victor Wanyama, goalkeeper Arnold Origi, Ayub Timbe and Johanna Omollo were the players declared positive by the Comoros authorities.
Understand the matter
With the development, Otieno says the National Executive Council (NEC) of the FKF will decide the next move pertaining his office and that of the TM.
“Work has to continue. Who and how the two offices are managed is now in the hands of president Nick Mwendwa and the NEC. I will graciously honour their decision, because they were there and understand this matter well,” a calm Otieno said.
This means Otieno, whose office is central in all CAF and FIFA communications regarding the FA, will miss among other privileges, an opportunity to represent Kenya in CAF congresses within the period.
The federation can appoint a person within it’s structure to sit in for Otieno for the period he will be out, and so is likely to happen with Oyando whose job involves following up on players all the time.
Besides the bans, FKF will pay Sh. 2.2 million, as a penalty to CAF.
Kenya still has a slim chance of qualifying for the 2022 AFCON fiesta in Cameroon, if the Jacob Mulee side can beat Togo and Egypt away and home respectively in the remaining fixtures of the campaign, that has seen Otieno and Oyando banned.