NAIROBI, November 5 – The Confederation of African Football (CAF) has lifted a two-year ban imposed on Kenya’s men Under-17 football team for withdrawing from the 2015 African Championship qualifiers.
Kenya was suspended last year after Football Kenya Federation pulled out the team which was scheduled to host South Sudan in the first leg of the CAF Under -17 qualifiers.
The team was withdrawn due to financial constraints and as a result, South Sudan received a walkover.
The decision to pardon Kenya and other nine countries was reached during the CAF Executive Committee held on October 27 and 28 in Cairo, Egypt.
The U-17, concerned member associations include Benin, Burundi, Central African Republic, Guinea Bissau, Liberia, Libya, Mauritania, Sierra Leone and South Sudan.
Also handed a sigh of relief are the men’s Under-20 teams from Gambia, Guinea Bissau, Equatorial Guinea, Lesotho and South Sudan.
This means that all 54 member associations are eligible to enter the qualifiers of the Africa U-17 Cup of Nations set for Madagascar in 2017 and Africa U-20 Cup of Nations Zambia 2017 before December 31 deadline.
The bans were given for breaches of regulations, including no-shows and age-cheating.
CAF director of communications Junior Binyam said the organisation decided to lift the bans so as not to deprive youths of those countries to miss back-to-back competitions.
The ban came in 12 years after the Kenyan Government disbanded the 2003 team who were sanctioned for fielding an illegible player in their Africa Youth Championships qualifiers against Ghana.