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Defiant KPL ready to resume league action

Last updated 29 days ago | By Washington Onyango

Tusker's Timothy Otieno tussles for the ball against Bobby of Kisumu All Stars in a KPL match. [Washington Onyango, Standard]

Kenyan Premier League (KPL) management yesterday said they will resume the league once they get the go-ahead from the Government

This is despite the Football Kenya Federation's (FKF) decision to end the 2019/20 season.

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KPL insists they are the body mandated to run the league as per the agreement with FKF and, therefore, any decision touching on the league should be made by them.

FKF President Nick Mwendwa had, in a series of tweets, declared the season over in May and declared Gor Mahia KPL champions.

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This was due to the coronavirus pandemic that had grounded sports activities across the world.

In a statement yesterday, KPL said their governing council meeting will be convened next week depending on the new measures that the Government will announce.

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“The Cabinet Secretary for Sports, Amb. Amina Mohamed, recently confirmed that the Government has set up a team to prepare for the resumption of sporting activities in the country once the Covid-19 situation has been managed.

“This is a sign that football in general is set to resume to normalcy in the near future. In view of that, the KPL Governing Council will deliberate on the Government’s blueprint to reopening the economy and its effect on football activities. For avoidance of doubt, no decision has been made regarding the fate of the KPL 2019/20 season.

“It should be emphasised that it is only the KPL Governing Council that has the power to make such a decision. In that meeting, the KPL Governing Council will discuss and decide on the fate of the KPL 2019/20 season. The provisional agenda for the meeting will be circulated when convening the meeting after consultation with the KPL chairman,” it added.

FIFA released a roadmap on how ideally football activities should resume in the wake of the Covid-19 pandemic and KPL has circulated the same to all clubs urging them to familiarise with the suggestions in what signals indications that KPL are keen on resuming the league.

“KPL advises clubs to familiarise themselves with the attached Fifa guidelines on dealing with the impact of the Covid-19 Pandemic on football activities and their recommended roadmap to resuming football activities. We shall also be guided by the Government’s guidelines on resumption of sporting activities. KPL has always been guided by the rule of law and will continue to maintain this path,” the statement added.

On April 30, Mwendwa through a tweet congratulated Gor Mahia and added they would represent the country in the CAF Champions League next season.

The FKF boss went on to point out where the decision was derived from in the law – Section 2.6 of the FKF constitution which governs failure to complete the league.

Across the world, the German Bundesliga is the first league to have resumed with strict protocols including players changing their shirts at halftime. 

This is something that might be a challenge to many KPL clubs considering that they are struggling with finances to pay players let alone to get new playing kit.