In Summary
  • Football Kenya Federation president Nick Mwendwa confirmed that the senior men national team, senior women national team and U23 men national team require atleast Sh83 million within the next week.

The football industry is staring at a crisis with three national teams on the verge of pulling out of their respective continental assignments owing to lack of funds.

Football Kenya Federation president Nick Mwendwa on Tuesday confirmed that the senior men, senior women, and Under-23 men national teams require at least Sh83 million within the next week.

But there is no money, he added, as the federation is broke.

Meanwhile, and despite sending in a request to the Ministry of Sports 10 days ago, these monies were yet to be approved and released by Monday evening.

The women's national team, commonly referred to as Harambee Starlets, require Sh43 million to effectively compete against South Africa, Nigeria and Zambia at the 2018 Africa Women Cup of Nations.

The competition will be staged in Ghana between November 17 and December 1, and Starlets if all goes well, coach David Ouma and his charges should depart for Accra next week on Tuesday.

"But we are yet to even book the flights, pay their allowances and sort out the service providers. If we get to Friday in this situation then we will withdraw our team, a development likely to attract sanctions from the authorities," said Mwendwa.

Similarly, the men's team - Harambee Stars - are about to begin preparations for the yet-to-be-confirmed 2019 Africa Cup of Nations (Afcon) qualifier against Sierra Leone on November 18.

FKF require Sh20 million to fly in foreign-based players, put them in camp and cater for other logistics including purchase of food, water, medication, payment of player allowances, among others.

A win for Stars in this game at Kasarani will guarantee qualification to the Afcon for the first time in 15 years.

While at it, the U23 side - also referred to as the Emerging Stars - might miss out on an opportunity to feature in the U23 Africa Cup of Nations and Tokyo 2020 Olympics qualifiers, with a home and away clash against Mauritius lined up on November 16 and 19 respectively.

"We continue to build confidence with the corporates as we seek alternative funding. We are also hoping to access the billions lying in the Sports Fund," said Mwendwa in mitigation.

Sports Principal Secretary Kirimi Kaberia, who is away in the UK to attend the Gor Mahia-Everton friendly match set forTuesday evening, was unavailable for comment by press time, so was the Cabinet Secretary Rashid Echesa.