Why there may be no Kenyan club in CAF Cup next season


Why there may be no Kenyan club in CAF Cup next season

In Summary

  • The Confederation of African Football (CAF) has set October 22 as the deadline for submitting the clubs for the competition, while uncertainty of completing the Kenya FKF Shield still lingering.
  • Gor Mahia was forwarded by FKF to represent Kenya in the CAF Champions League, although there is a petition in court against the decision.
  • CAF has given leeway for member associations to use the best mechanism available to select their respective representatives in both inter-club competitions in cases where leagues and domestic cups did not culminate due to COVID-19.

Football Kenya Federation (FKF) has no answer yet to the question who represents the country in the Confederation Cup in the 2020/21 season.

The Confederation of African Football (CAF) has set October 22 as the deadline for submitting the clubs for the competition, while uncertainty of completing the Kenya FKF Shield still lingering.

It is the winner of the Kenyan Cup that should fly the countries’ flag in the second tier continental inter-club competition, thus failure to complete last season’s campaign leaves the federation with no team to submit to CAF.

In March 2020, the FKF Shield was stopped amid the COVID-19 pandemic, and according to president Nick Mwendwa, there is no existing provision on how to pick an alternative representative.

“We hope between now and the deadline for submission we can finish the Shield competition and get a winner. If we don’t, I’m afraid we may not send any club for Confederation Cup. The danger of using any reasonable formula that is not established in our competition regulations, we may end up in court. There are people always watching waiting for an opportunity to oppose anything that we try to do,” said Mwendwa.

Last edition winners Bandari FC are however ready to represent Kenya if called upon, according to CEO Edward Oduor.

“We are the holders of the Cup. We (Bandari FC) were also still in contention by the time COVID-19 stopped everything. It is therefore reasonable to give us that opportunity if eventually there will be no room to finish last season’s competition. We however cannot initiate the process. If the federation formally writes to us, we can bridge that gap,” Oduor offered.

He however says that has to be done in time to allow their sponsors to allocate funds needed to facilitate participation.

Gor Mahia was forwarded by FKF to represent Kenya in the CAF Champions League, although there is a petition in court against the decision.

The petitioners (KPL Limited), argued FKF prematurely ended the season declaring Gor the winners, further stating it amounted to overstepping their mandate.

“If we are in court contesting about Gor Mahia who we submitted by invoking a well laid down guideline, what do you expect if we presented any team without any reference in our competition regulations? I would not wish to waste time and resources in court. In fact, even for Gor, if Ohaga (John Ohaga – Sports Disputes Tribunal Chairman) rules that we withdraw Gor, we will have no option,” explained Mwendwa.

CAF has given leeway for member associations to use the best mechanism available to select their respective representatives in both inter-club competitions in cases where leagues and domestic cups did not culminate due to COVID-19.

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Story By Jacob Icia
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