•Kalekwa said a transitional committee formed last week is currently going through the contract and will advice the clubs fully on its contents
•Kalekwa, however, pointed out that the league must be run independently from the association to maintain professionalism.
Sofapaka President Elly Kalekwa yesterday welcomed the new sponsorship deal for the Kenyan top league and praised Football Kenya Federation (FKF) for going out of their way to ensure clubs are taken care of.
FKF announced a Sh.1.2b five-year deal for the top tier league with Nigerian betting firm Betking. Under the deal, clubs will get at least Sh8 million per season.
“So far so good. Before this deal, we had nothing and clubs were really suffering and so this is a big relief to us and we fully support the deal with Betking,” he said.
Kalekwa said a transitional committee formed last week is currently going through the contract and will advice the clubs fully on its contents. He also endorsed the proposal to have the name of the league changed from KPL to FKF PL
“It is really not a big deal to change the name of the league. What is important is clubs get money for their operations like paying players and honouring fixtures. Everything else is secondary,”he observed
Kalekwa, however, pointed out that the league must be run independently from the association to maintain professionalism.
“We have run the league for many years under the Kenyan Premier League (KPL) and it worked perfectly. Our request is that whatever name we will run the league under going forward, we be able to maintain the sense of independence and professionalism that existed. In this day and era, associations do not run the league and we are happy that FKF are keen to maintain the same even with the new arrangement.”
Apart from his role as chairman of Sofapaka, Kalekwa chairs the KPL Marketing Committee.