Uhuru, Ruto concerned over status of Kenya team to Rio

August 14, 2016 3:38 pm
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DP William Ruto with Paul Tanui who won silver on Sunday in the men’s 10,000 metres final/DPPS
DP William Ruto with Paul Tanui who won silver on Sunday in the men’s 10,000 metres final/DPPS

, NAIROBI, Kenya, Aug 14 – The government on Sunday expressed concerns over reports of mismanagement of the Kenyan team at the Rio Olympics, where a senior sports official was deported and another recalled, with both State House and Deputy President William Ruto calling for action against culpable officials.

State House Spokesperson Manoah Esipisu while addressing journalists in Nairobi said the government is waiting for a brief of the exact scenario with fears that any mismanagement may impact negatively on athletes’ performance.

Overview
  • State House Spokesperson Manoah Esipisu while addressing journalists in Nairobi said the government is waiting for a brief of the exact scenario with fears that any mismanagement may impact negatively on athletes' performance.
  • "We would like our athletes to focus on what is at stake in Rio and secondly, we would like our officials to know why they are in Rio. They are there to ensure they perform," he stated. "We do have government officials down there and we are waiting for their reports."
  • He urged those representing Kenya to focus on winning while the officials should help them achieve their goals, instead of complicating things.

“We would like our athletes to focus on what is at stake in Rio and secondly, we would like our officials to know why they are in Rio. They are there to ensure they perform,” he stated. “We do have government officials down there and we are waiting for their reports.”

He urged those representing Kenya to focus on winning while the officials should help them achieve their goals, instead of complicating matters.

Esipisu warned that “there will be consequences” if it is established that some sports officials are to blame for any misdeeds during the global competition.

“The President will be interested to know specifically what shenanigans have been going on and if that has undermined the Kenyan athletes. Obviously, everything has to have consequences,” he cautioned.

“We don’t think that people should undermine the performance of Kenyan athletes and get away with it.”

On his part, Deputy President William Ruto who is in Rio de Janeiro instructed the Ministry of Sports to investigate and take stern action against any official who is involved in any malpractice in the Kenyan camp.

Ruto directed the Cabinet Secretary for Sports Hassan Wario to safeguard the interests of the athletes who are great ambassadors of the country.

He spoke after meeting the Kenyan team in the Olympic Village and some sports officials.

Among issues to be investigated is the allocation of few training kits to the athletes, accreditation and issuance of allowances.

The Deputy President also wants the Sports Ministry to settle all pending allowances immediately saying, “the athletes’ performance should not be compromised by a few selfish individuals.”

It is understood that DP Ruto also received complaints from Nike, the official sponsor for uniforms for the Kenyan team.

Despite the sports giant supplying thousands of kits, the athletes were only issued with either one or two.

The Kenyan team has been in spotlight specifically on damning doping allegations, and the Deputy President has since warned that the government will deal firmly with anyone engaging in the vice.

This was after shame rocked Team Kenya camp at the Rio Olympics following the expulsion of two athletics officials.

The latest bombshell saw Kenyan sprints coach John Anzrah sent home on the eve of the athletics programme after allegedly being caught in possession of 800m runner Ferguson Rotich’s accreditation card and going ahead to produce urine for tests before the Doping Control Officer exposed him.

The first incident saw track and field team manager Major (Rtd) Michael Rotich deported from the Rio Olympics on Sunday after investigations by the Sunday Times newspaper and German television channel ARD showed the athletics official demanding Sh1.3mn (£10,000) for agreeing to warn a British coach about imminent doping tests.

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