Kenyan Premier League limited Chief Executive Officer Jack Oguda has called for the re-evaluation of club licensing so as to block broke teams from competing in the top flight league.
Oguda feels that last week’s unfortunate incident where Mount Kenya United players gifted Gor Mahia a walkover was an elaborate indication that the club licensing procedure needs to be reviewed.
Mount Kenya United, who were to host K’Ogalo for a midweek match in Machakos last Thursday, failed to turn up at the venue, forcing match commissioner Gilbert Ndolo to award the visitors a 2-0 win 30 minutes after the stipulated kick off time.
It later emerged that the Mount Kenya United players had staged a sit-in at the City stadium in Nairobi to protest unpaid salaries for seven months.
Oguda has placed the blame squarely on the federation’s doorstep, saying that they need to be stricter when evaluating the financial health of the various clubs to avoid any future walkovers.
“That was a very sorry situation. We did not anticipate any walk overs because it has never happened since KPL took over the running of the league. Our mandate was to commercialise the league but we are now questioning ourselves whether this is possible when we have clubs struggling so much to even honour fixtures.
“We underwent club licensing as a means of censuring clubs and ensuring that only those that are self-sustainable get to play in the various leagues. If a club doesn’t have a sponsor they shouldn’t be given a license,” he said.
FKF have however challenged the league body to be more proactive in their mandate to commercialise the league as stipulated in their contract.
“Our contract with KPL states that they are to make the league financially viable and we understand the challenges, but we urge them to keep looking for more revenue streams.
“On our part, we are in the process of re-evaluating the club licensing procedure and we ask all clubs to support us because the rules are laid down for their own benefit,” said FKF Media liaison Barry Otieno.
Oguda has however cautioned club chairmen to be proactive and source for alternative revenue for their clubs as oppose to simply relying on the grants offered by KPL.
“When we had a partnership with SuperSport, we used to give each of the 16 clubs Sh750,000 every month. Now that that contract was terminated, we can only give them Sh300,000 a month and that is hardly enough.
“For a club to participate in the league comfortably they must put in at least Sh30 million every year,” he said.
Club Licensing regulations were introduced during the 2006 Fifa Congress in Munich, and are designed to improve club football by targeting key areas such as financial soundness, best practice, club governance and youth football.