Mwendwa upbeat FKF polls will go on as planned

Football Kenya Federation president Nick Mwendwa is adamant elections will proceed as planned despite legitimacy questions subjected to it by his biggest competitors. Sam Nyamweya, Nicholas Musonye and Twaha Mbarak – who were viewed as Mwendwa’s biggest challengers, stood down their presidential ambitions after claiming the nomination process was flawed. The three, including Sammy Sholei, have vowed to challenge the process in court and hinted at plans of forming their own parallel federation but Mwendwa has dismissed them as cowards. Mwendwa, who took over office in 2016 from Nyamweya, will be hoping he can be third time lucky with the poll having twice been cancelled by the Sports Disputes Tribunal with prolonged standoff likely to attract sanctions from world governing body FIFA. “The eligibility criteria that was pointed out as the reason to cancel the March elections was reviewed. I have not heard of anybody contesting for presidency who failed the nomination process, for those who presented themselves before the board. I therefore expect that we will move forward and get to the business of building football for the next five years,” Mwendwa said. On the competition from the presidential hopefuls, Mwendwa reiterated his confidence he will triumph with a huge margin. “I respect all the contestants but I know the report card of the work we have done since we came into the office speaks for us. I expect more than three quarters of the total votes,” noted Mwendwa. Sports Journalist Boniface Osano, former AFC Leopards Chairman Dan Mule, Omondi Aduda and Herbert Mwachiro are in the race to succeed Mwendwa. Meanwhile, Mwendwa has reached out to the Ministry of Sports again to speed up the resumption of football, after the first directive locked out the sport among the disciplines allowed to play again. Football, being a contact sport, has no definite date for resumption from the guidelines given by Sports CS Amb. Amina Mohammed earlier this month. “We have asked for permission to be allowed to play. We want the league to come back. Our plan was to have the league back on October 23 but because we have delayed we want to do this a week later, maybe November 6 or 7. “We have prayed to the Ministry to allow us to do that because as you know preparations are already on. Particularly we want to host Zambia on October 10 at Nyayo National Stadium and from there football comes back,” he revealed. The federation also plans to stage another international friendly at the reopened Nyayo National Stadium on October 13, against Sudan as part of preparations for the 2021 African Cup of Nations (AFCON) qualifiers.

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