Vihiga United in grave danger two months after promotion as players go without pay


Vihiga United in grave danger two months after promotion as players go without pay
Vihiga United during a past match. (PHOTO/Sportpicha)

In Summary

  • Promoted to FKF-PL barely two months ago on November 4, Vihiga United are getting life tough in the top division with the playing unit owed up to six month salary arrears, Citizen Digital has gathered.
  • So bad is the situation that some of the players are absconding training, and the the picture looks grim as their sponsors Vihiga County is offering no solid road map out of the problem.
  • The pay drama has affected the team with results not admirable.
  • In the 18-team league they are ranked 13 with a paltry five points from seven games.

Promoted to FKF-PL barely two months ago on November 4, Vihiga United are getting life tough in the top division with the playing unit owed up to six month salary arrears, Citizen Digital has gathered.

So bad is the situation that some of the players are absconding training, and the the picture looks grim as their sponsors Vihiga County is offering no solid road map out of the problem.

The failure to pay the players’ salaries has heightened speculation on social media platforms that the county may have pulled the plug on its sponsorship for the county team.

However, Deputy Governor Patrick Saisi who also serves as the acting sports minister has dismissed the reports.

“Those are just propaganda (that we have stopped sponsoring Vihiga United). We are still sponsoring Vihiga United and Vihiga Queens.

The team used to be paid directly by the County Government, so it became difficult, the auditor general raised a query, why do we pay Vihiga United players and Vihiga Queens directly yet they are not direct employees of the county, this led to the formation of the sports committee and allocation of sports fund kitty in order to cater for needs of sports in the country including payment of salaries,” said Saisi.

Saisi added that the sports fund had received cash in their accounts and that the players will be sorted out.

However, in a separate interview, Vhihiga United chairperson Kahi Indimuli said that only Ksh 2 million was deposited in the team’s account yet the salary arrears stand at Ksh 9.7 million.

Kahi says it is not logical to allocate such meagre funds for his team for both salaries and match facilitation calling on the county government to come out openly and state whether they are still in a position to support the team or not other than playing cat and mouse games with the career of the players.

“I cannot take over responsibility or engage other people to come in and support in paying salaries when the county government has not handed over the team to us,” Kahi lamented.

Players keep crying not knowing their fate as some of them have had their houses locked as some claim they have no funds to get to training and even if they tried, getting food and upkeep is a struggle,” said Kahi.

Vihiga United coach Sammy Okoth says the poor performance from the team is a result of some players not attending training sessions but he can’t tell why because most of them switch off their phones.

“It  is true some players don’t come for training, ahead of our game against Bidco in Kisumu we had only trained for two days, I however can’t  tell why some fail to come to the field because at times they are unreachable which ends up affecting the team,” said Okoth.

The pay drama has affected the team with results not admirable.

In the 18-team league they are ranked 13 with a paltry five points from seven games.

 

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Story By Herman Kamariki
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