Game Game

Ministry of Sports set aside Sh1bn to reward athletes: Rio probe report

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Sports Cabinet Secretary Hassan Wario (left) and his Principal Secretary Richard Ekai when they appeared before the Parliamentary Committee on Labor and Social Affairs on September 6, 2016. PHOTO/TIMOTHY OLOBULU
Sports Cabinet Secretary Hassan Wario (left) and his Principal Secretary Richard Ekai when they appeared before the Parliamentary Committee on Labor and Social Affairs on September 6, 2016. PHOTO/TIMOTHY OLOBULU

NAIROBI, Kenya, Nov 30 – The Parliamentary Committee on Social Labour and Welfare that was tasked to investigate the Rio Olympics scandal, has put the Ministry of Sports, Culture and Arts on the spotlight over Sh1billion set aside for rewarding athletes that participated in the games.

According to the David Were chaired committee report that was released on Wednesday, Sh1 billion was set aside towards rewarding athletes by the Ministry of Sports, Culture and the Arts including paying allowances.

However, the report recommended that the Ministry of Sports should provide an itemized budget showing how Sh1 billion set aside for Sports activities will be used in rewarding athletes that participated in the Rio Olympics.

Also outlined in the report is huge disparity in ticketing, accommodation, accreditation and uniform distribution to Team Kenya.

From the total budget of Sh583, 460, 966 approved for the Rio Olympics where the Ministry of Sports contributed Sh499, 777, 426 and National Olympic Committee of Kenya (NOCK) contributed Sh83, 683, 540, all the money was not accounted for.

And it’s from this that the committee has recommended the office of the Auditor General to undertake a detailed forensic audit of any money allocated from the consolidated fund towards facilitating the Rio 2016 Summer Games and table a report before the appropriate Committee of the National Assembly within three months of the adoption of the report.

“The Auditor General should undertake special audit on the expenditure relating to the Rio 2016 Summer Olympics including the procurement of tickets so as to determine the actual number of air tickets procured, dispatched and the actual recipients since the committee could not authenticate the veracity of the documents purporting to account for the same,” part of the recommendations from the report read.

The ticketing schedule provided by the Ministry of Sports indicated that 87 tickets were procured for athletes. However, the Committee established that only 80 athletes travelled to Rio.

Also the Cabinet Secretary for Sports, Culture and Arts Hassan Wario submitted that 214 tickets were procured for Team Kenya while the documents presented indicated that 184 people were scheduled to travel to Rio.

This is despite David Rudisha, Eliud Kipchoge, Faith Chepng’etich, Asbel Kiprop paying their own ticket to Rio.

The report wants NOCK chairman Kipchoge Keino and his Secretary General F.K Paul reimburse the money spent in procuring tickets for their sons Ian Keino and Vincent Paul respectively.

On the kits, it was recommended that the Ministry of Sports should invite sports manufactures company NIKE to undertake a special audit on the expenditure relating to the Rio 2016 Games, including the procurement and supply of uniforms so as to establish the actual number of uniforms received and disbursed, as the committee could not authenticate the veracity of the documents tabled before it.

The report was tabled in Parliament on Wednesday after taking close to three months to compile the report while the Senate is yet to release its report.

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