Row rocks BAK over choice of Open venue


Row rocks BAK over choice of Open venue

In Summary

  • Differences have rocked the Boxing Association of Kenya ahead of the Kenya Open Championship set to begin on Thursday.
  • Whereas BAK president John Kameta is of the view that the competition which serves as rials for All African Games and African Championship should be held at the Bamburi Public Beach in Mombasa, he’s alleging that his ally turned foe, Anthony 'Jamal' Otieno, is leading another camp which is planning to stage the event at Chaka Hall in Nairobi.

Sharp differences have rocked the Boxing Association of Kenya ahead of the Kenya Open Championship set to begin on Thursday.

Whereas BAK president John Kameta is of the view that the competition which serves as trials for All African Games and African Championship should be held at the Bamburi Public Beach in Mombasa, he’s alleging that his ally turned foe, Anthony ‘Jamal’ Otieno, is leading another camp which is planning to stage the event at Chaka Hall in Nairobi.

The BAK boss has however warned that African Boxing Confederation (AFBC) where he serves as a committee member and International Boxing Association (IBA) will only recognize the team to be selected in Mombasa adding that the boxers who will compete in Nairobi risk being locked out of the championships.

“I would like to tell my opponents not to try to divide boxing family for their own benefits because with these wrangles our players and those aspiring to be boxers will suffer.  I am not ready to see this happen. I am the president and I will not allow political interference in boxing,” Kameta charged.

The All African Games are set for August 19 -31 in Morocco while African Championship will be held in July at a yet to be decided venue.

(FILES)Boxing Association of Kenya chairman, John Kameta, addressing the media at a past function. He has threatened to sue Sport CS, Dr. Hassan Wario. PHOTO/Stafford Ondego/Sportpicha
(FILES)Boxing Association of Kenya chairman, John Kameta, addressing the media at a past function. He has threatened to sue Sport CS, Dr. Hassan Wario. PHOTO/Stafford Ondego/Sportpicha

Last year, the boxing league was marred with wrangles putting Kenya at the risk of suspension by the IBA following persistent government interference with Kameta accusing the then Sports Cabinet Secretary Rashid Echesa for actively trying to split the league by organizing parallel legs against the federation’s calendar.

At the same time, Kameta has rescinded his retirement decision announcing that he will be defending his seat at the July elections.

Earlier, the BAK supremo had stated he would not be running but says the instability in the sport has informed him change of heart.

“I cannot leave this post to cartels who does not have anything to bring to boxing but only want personal gain. I will be seeking re-election and that is very clear,” he said.

The battle for the top seat will be between Kameta and Jamaal who also doubles up as the Kisumu Boxing Association chairman.

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Story By Stanley Mativo
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