The Kenya Premier League Governing Council has revealed that the 2019/2020 season will go on as earlier planned. This is despite calls by a number of clubs to have the League suspended due to the current financial woes that have engulfed the various football entities.
“On Thursday, October 17, 2019, the KPL Governing Council resolved that the 2019-20 Season shall proceed as scheduled and that Clubs must abide by the Rules Governing Kenyan Football. The decision was reached amidst calls to suspend the League while acknowledging that there is a financial crisis in the League and Clubs after the withdrawal of its main sponsor,” Said KPL in an official statement.
The League governing body has at the same time confirmed that it is committed to improving the beautiful game. Through CEO Jack Oguda, KPL revealed that it has approached various corporates to sponsor the League but nothing is yet to materialize due to the harsh economic times in the Country.
“However, the League is committed to continuously improving the product, use football as a force for good, support football development and act with integrity for the sake of its reputation and sanity”
“As it stands, we have approached various corporates but due to the current economic situation in the country, the offers being tabled do not meet the demands of the League. It takes time to formalize any sponsorship deal since most corporates operate on running budgets which were already set in the beginning of their respective financial year,” added KPL.
KPL has also called on the Kenyan Government to bail it out and help improve the running and management of the Kenyan League. KPL has called on the government to speed up the renovations at the Nyayo Stadium to enable clubs host their matches there.
“We would like to formally plead with the Government to step in and provide a short term financial solution to facilitate the smooth running of the League. Notably, some of the teams are actually struggling to honor both local and international matches whilst players and officials risk losing their employment”.
“Our further appeal is specifically extended to the PS State Department of Sports, Ministry of Sports, Culture & Heritage to fast track the completion of Nyayo National Stadium which is the best arena to showcase the League”.
“In the long run, we appeal to the Government to help clubs lobby for a change in the legal regime governing sports in the country in which clubs continue to believe would help in financial self-sustainability. In addition, we also appeal for more tax incentives to corporates that are supporting the sport and to other football stakeholders (fans, corporates) to come and support the beautiful game”.
A total of 6 Clubs led by Kakamega Homeboyz had filed a petition to KPL to have the League suspended until a way forward on how to solve the current stalemate is found.
Other Clubs that called for the League’s suspension are: Chemelil Sugar, Sony Sugar, Nzoia Sugar, Mathare United, Kariobangi Sharks and Kisumu AllStars.
The KPL will resume this weekend with all the 18 teams in action across different Match Venues in the Country.