Govt abandons Rwanda-bound para-volleyball team


PHOTO/Sportpicha
PHOTO/Sportpicha

In Summary

  • Kenya Sitting Volleyball Federation (KSVF) president Polycarp Mboya has thrown doubt on the Government’s pledge to support all national teams after the national Para-volley teams failed to secure any funding ahead of the Africa Paralympics Sitting Championship
  • KSVF was forced to dig into its own coffers to help the two teams-both women and men-traveling to Rwanda for the biannual event set for this weekend after the federation failed to get any sort of support from the Sports Ministry
Stanley Mativo 

Kenya Sitting Volleyball Federation (KSVF) president Polycarp Mboya has thrown doubt on the Government’s pledge to support all national teams after the national Para-volley teams failed to secure any funding ahead of the Africa Paralympics Sitting Championship.

KSVF was forced to dig into its own coffers to help the two teams-both women and men-traveling to Rwanda for the biannual event set for this weekend after the federation failed to get any sort of support from the Sports Ministry.

Mboya said they tabled their budget of Sh 9.4 million to the ministry in May and on Tuesday night he received a call allegedly from Sports Commissioner Japson Gitonga who informed him government had no funds to support the teams.

According to the KSVF supremo, Gitonga instead said the ministry would fund the African Sitting Championship set for Morocco in January 2020.

“We are surprised by the turn of events because we sent our budget to the ministry four months ago and we have been training in Kasarani for the last one month with the knowledge of the ministry. Why abandon us in the last hour yet they know how important this championship is,” he bemoaned.

With the teams likely to face heavy sanctions and a four-year ban from the Africa Para-Volleyball Federation should they fail to honour the event, Mboya confirmed he will take it upon himself to evade the consequences.

“I must ensure we participate in these games by all means because it will be worse if we miss it. Again these players have been training for the last one month and we will have demoralised them if we fail to go to Rwanda,” he added.

When reached by Citizen Digital, Mboya declined to comment on the issue instead referring us to the Principal Secretary Peter Kaberia. The PS however was not reachable through phone.

The ten-day event is poised to attract five nations namely; Kenya, Egypt, Zimbabwe, Rwanda and Morocco.

It is not the first time that persons with disabilities have complained about neglect from the Ministry of Sports. Recently, the national amputees’ team almost missed a chance to participate in an international tournament were it not for Nairobi Governor Mike Sonko.

In May, the national Paralympics team staged a demonstration in different areas of Nairobi protesting delayed allowances after representing the country in Morocco for qualifiers to the Tokyo 2020 Paralympics.

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Story By Stanley Mativo
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