NAIROBI, Kenya, Oct 17 – The chaos witnessed on Sunday during the Gor Mahia versus Muhoroni Youth KPL Top Eight finale has raised fresh fears over security for this weekend’s Mashemeji Derby, but the Kenyan Premier League management has moved to assure fans of safety.
KPL Chief Executive Officer Jack Oguda has said there have been meetings geared towards ensuring a secure environment for Sunday’s eagerly anticipated crunch tie.
“Of course it is something that has raised our awareness, and not to say we were not considering tight security. We have had meetings and will continue to have them to ensure that security will be at 100 percent on Sunday,” Oguda told Capital Sport.
He added; “Our league partners (SportPesa) also sponsor the two clubs and it (security) is something they are taking with keen interest because this is a match that will be beamed across the continent.”
The CEO also left it open as to whether the match venue will remain the same, Nyayo, or whether they will move to a bigger venue, Kasarani.
“We have a meeting on Tuesday where we are going to assess all options available but at the moment, the match is still at Nyayo,” Oguda said.
A section of disgruntled Gor fans disrupted the Muhoroni match on Sunday twice, prompting centre referee Andrew Juma to blow the final whistle in a huff with barely 30 seconds left after the rowdy supporters invaded the pitch.
Police had to use teargas canisters to disperse the crowd leading to a few minor injuries. Gor is now set to suffer hefty sanctions from the KPL Independent Disciplinary and Complaints Committee.
“We already have the referee’s report and we are now waiting for the match com’s. We want to gather as much evidence as possible but we have already alerted the IDCC of the case. As soon as we get all the reports, we will present the case,” Oguda said.
Gor have already been docked three points following crowd trouble in their first leg match against Tusker FC and it will be interesting to see the kind of action meted on them as second time offenders.
Physical trainer Sanro Fantoni is also a subject of scrutiny after a scuffle involving him and KPL head of security GMT Otieno heightened temperatures, prompting fans from the ‘Russia’ side of the stands to jump into the playing area.
Just as his employers, this will be the second time Fantoni will be in trouble as he was handed a one match suspension just a month ago after an altercation with a match official.
Poor performance on the pitch and a clamour for elections are some of the underlying things creating volatility amongst Gor fans and on Sunday, they wanted to vent their anger on their own players.