KPL referees ask for ‘lift’ to match venues, how then can they be impartial?


KPL referees ask for 'lift' to match venues, how then can they be impartial?
AFC Leopards SC chairman Dan Shikanda watch action against Kakamega Homeboyz FC during their Kenyan Premier League match at Bukhungu stadium in Kakamega on September 01, 2019. Homeboyz FC won 1-0. Photo/Stafford Ondego/Sportpicha/ Citizen

In Summary

  • Kakamega Homeboyz FC boss Cleophas ‘Toto’ Shimanyula has blamed Football Kenya Federation (FKF) and the Kenyan Premier League body (KPL) as the forces behind the struggles rocking the top-tier league.
  • Citing the predicament faced by match referees who have gone for months without pay, the Homeboyz boss regretted the development noting that it could have been handled better.

Kakamega Homeboyz FC boss Cleophas ‘Toto’ Shimanyula has blamed Football Kenya Federation (FKF) and the Kenyan Premier League body (KPL) as the forces behind the struggles rocking the top-tier league.

Citing the predicament faced by match referees who have gone for months without pay, the Homeboyz boss regretted the development noting that it could have been handled better.

“Referees have not been paid their salaries, and they are literally depending on lifts as means of transport to match venues.

“They have salary arrears of close to 7 matches backdating to last year. If a referee can ask me for transport how can he officiate without favouring me?” he posed.

Just recently the Homeboyz chief wrote to KPL asking them to suspend the league before things get worse and according to him they are waiting for a response from the KPL CEO Jack Oguda.

Several clubs have rallied their support behind Shimanyula for the league to be suspended with Sony Sugar being a good example failing to show up at their own home ground – at Green Stadium – against AFC Leopards as their players protested payment of salary arrears.

“It is better we halt this league so that we get a solution to this problem which has affected almost all the clubs,” he argued.

Shimanyula has also blamed KPL for poor planning and failure to invest wisely when they had sponsorship in order to prepare for the future.

“KPL should have thoroughly invested from the monies they have been getting from the betting company and these problems would have been averted,” he added.

Shimanyula argues that the current predicament should be an eye-opener to clubs

to plan for life without sponsorships.

 “How can you explain that even top clubs like AFC Leopards and Gor Mahia have not paid their players salaries?

“With all the sponsorships deals they have had their officials never thought of investing the cash to get some money,” Shimanyula advised

So far several clubs including Gor Mahia, AFC Leopards, Sofapaka, Mathare United, Nzoia Sugar, Chemelil Sugar, Zoo Kericho, and Sony Sugar have admitted to owing players and staff salary arrears and allowances dating back to three months.

 

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Story By Godfrey Ashiali
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