•The world football governing body, Fifa, and the Kenyan government have agreed on a series of measures to improve football in the country.
•This exciting announcement was made by Sports Cabinet Secretary Ababu Namwamba on Monday, bringing a breath of fresh air into an atmosphere previously choked by unnecessary wrangling.
After several months of turmoil, there is finally some good news for the country's local football scene.
The world football governing body, Fifa, and the Kenyan government have agreed on a series of measures to improve football in the country.
This exciting announcement was made by Sports Cabinet Secretary Ababu Namwamba on Monday, bringing a breath of fresh air into an atmosphere previously choked by unnecessary wrangling.
A joint Fifa/Caf delegation is visiting the country to meet with government officials and key football stakeholders.
Namwamba has made it clear to the two governing bodies that the government has no intention of directly running the football.
The government's priority, according to the CS, is to create an enabling environment. This includes enacting appropriate laws and policies to ensure that those in charge of football do so effectively.
It's also worth noting that the government discussed several projects and agreed on specific goals to help Kenya return to the top of the football league.
Fifa shared some existing programs that could assist the country in gaining a foothold on the global stage. The Coach on the Ground program, for example, aims to provide well-trained and technically competent coaches at the grassroots level.
As part of the agreement with the government, Fifa will train and certify all teachers who coach children during primary and secondary school ball games.
Ababu believes that Fifa's Football for Schools program will help to push the Talanta Hela program of developing football from the ground up.
Namwamba also stated that they had discussions with the two governing bodies about infrastructure upgrades. This is significant because Kenya lacks a single stadium capable of hosting a Fifa/CAF match.
Fifa has previously condemned Moi Stadium, Kasarani Stadium, and Nyayo Stadium. The East African country was denied the right to host the 2018 African Nations Championship four months before the event because several venues were not ready.
Fortunately, Fifa and Caf have agreed to provide the necessary technical assistance to give local facilities a much-needed facelift. Namwamba urged more Kenyan referees to take on international assignments.
Some of our referees who had been chosen to officiate at the Qatar World Cup were unable to participate due to Fifa's suspension. Even more intriguing is Namwamba's disclosure that the government is in talks with those who can broadcast football to market the talent in this country.
The CS said a deal has been struck with SA-based media giant MultiChoice for the return of live broadcasts of Kenyan Premier League (KPL) games to SuperSport – the leading continental sports broadcaster.
He expects the live broadcasts to begin by the end of the ongoing 2022/23 season. Broadcasting money is still the most important source of revenue for top-flight football around the world and clubs would most definitely welcome the return of SuperSport in the country to ease off their financial burdens.
Following a squabble with the Nick Mwendwa-led administration, SuperSport exited the Kenyan Premier League (KPL) in 2017 after a decade of operation.
This followed FKF's expansion of the top-flight league to include two more teams, which would have required the broadcaster to air more matches than the initial budget allowed.
With the newly-introduced measures in place, the country is sure to gain traction on the international football scene.