June 21, 2021

Korir: If we put FKF politics aside, Mwendwa can take Kenyan football forward

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The top-flight club’s official now says Kenyans should rally behind the new office for better football in the country

Nairobi City Stars CEO Patrick Korir has tipped Nick Mwendwa to put Kenya’s football on the world map if he gets a free hand to do his job after being re-elected on Saturday.

The 41-year-old IT guru was handed another four-year term to run football in the country after he humiliated his opponents in a national election where he secured 77 votes with his closest challenger only managing 5.

Former Gor Mahia CEO Omondi Aduda with his running mate Athanas Obango came second with just five votes. Herbert Mwachiro, who once served as the FKF deputy CEO alongside Harold Ndege, who is a former Kenya international, walked home with three votes.

Journalist Boniface Osano and his running mate had nothing to smile about since they walked home empty-handed, the same as Dan Mule, who had presented Peter Lichungu as his running mate.

Speaking to Goal after the end of the polling exercise, Korir revealed the return of Mwendwa was a welcome move but warned he has his work cut out – to save the image of football before the next elections.

“Nick [Mwendwa] did very well in his first term as President against all the odds,” Korir told Goal. “Odds in the sense that he inherited an outfit that had immeasurable debts and squabbles from the immediate past Federation that was poorly and unprofessionally run.

“There were many firsts after he came on board, one being women’s football that has now scaled great heights from abysmal levels.

“From making it to the Africa Women’s Cup of Nations in 2016, and so close to the next edition in 2018, to winning Cecafa with an unchecked run…all this under a strengthened women’s league and with proper coaching.

“Now we are seeing a horde of ladies breaking into professional ranks and there was also grassroots training of coaches and support to branches.”

Korir continued: “As a journalist who covered Kenyan football under two previous regimes, there have been more positives to talk about as opposed to the reverse during his term.

“However, in the lead up to the mid-October that saw Mwendwa sweep the board with a clean 77-5 vote beating of his nearest challenger, the Federation was dragged through politics and spent a close to a year in the corridors of the Sports Disputes Tribunal.

“Those cases, through constant media highlights, makes one believe the Federation is troubled and corrupt like the ones before, but if all this are put to the past, then I can bet Kenyans will see an improved sport under Mwendwa, he can do it and I know he has the ability to achieve that.”

Mwendwa’s first major assignment will be the Africa Cup of Nations double-header against Comoros in November.