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OPINION: FKF has continued to support legends, critics included

Byadmin

Mar 20, 2024

BY KENN OKAKA

When Football Kenya Federation (FKF) new administration came into office in 2016 under the leadership of Nick Mwendwa as president, a deliberate move to empower local coaches with CAF coaching courses was rolled out.

Among the coaches who today are holders of certified CAF coaching licences are the legends who donned the national colors in the past, among them even the fiercest critics of the current administration.

Kenya’s all time leading goal scorer Bonface Ambani is one of the loudest critics of the Mwendwa administration. However, Ambani is among the beneficiaries of the administrations courses. A holder of CAF C coaching licence, Ambani was taken through the training by the FKF leadership and today, he is employed as a technical director by three football teams.

Whether holding three similar jobs is right or wrong is a question worth interrogating. Ambani went through CAF D and CAF C and today, he makes a living from football as the technical director at Nzoia FC in the FKF Premier League, Bucks Nakuru which plays in the National Division One and Mara Sugar in the National Super League.

For a constructive critic, Ambani ought to spot the positive impacts that have been engineered by the administration as one point out at any misdoings of the regime.

When the current FKF came to office, Ambani was a dealer in sports apparel but today, he has already closed his shop in Nairobi and is full time earning from football after getting trained. Being an example of how the empowerment is helping former players, Ambani has remained a critic of FKF never acknowledging the importance of the trainings done by FKF to coaches. Some critics, led by Bonface Ambani have been criticizing the courses yet they are certified courses by CAF and they continue to benefit the former players.

Over 7,000 coaches have have been trained and now Kenya has coaches spread across the country and nearly all teams from the grassroots to the top level are handled by trained and qualified coaches.

When Nick Mwendwa came into office, his rallying call was to have the legends of the game trained into various areas of football. Fred Ambani, an elder brother to Boniface Ambani and yet another legend of the game had no qualifications but today, he holds a CAF B and is currently undertaking a CAF A course slated to graduate at the end of the year. Fred is today an assistant coach at premier league side AFC Leopards and has remained focused on his job advancement.

Anthony ‘Modo’ Kimani is the head coach at Ulinzi Stars and is in the CAF A class as well as as other former footballers like Jerim Onyango, Tom Juma among hundreds of others. These are former football legends that took to class, got their trining and like fish to water, they have moved on to advance in their managerial roles avoiding unnecessary critism and petty politics. Others include lady coaches Florence Adhiambia Dua, Jackline Juma who has moved from the field of play to a CAF A candidate this year. Jackline is the head coach of the national Under 19 Talenta Hela Girls team that i set to travel to Spain for a bootcamp. Many more legends are currently coaching at Premier League and National Super League levels.

The clarion call by the Mwendwa administration has been to impart former players with knowledge which will benefit them long after the current administration is gone.

Referees to have been empowered with PET being the conducted on a regular basis whereas the local league has been opened up to the world with more players gaining opportunities to ply their trade abroad, thanlks to the deal entered between FKF and AZAM TV and KBC for broadcast. Women football has been thrown into the lime light and the football scene in Kenya is blossoming. Before, Kenya had less than five professional players playing abroad but now up to 20 women players are playing abroad.

With the exit of Supersport from the Kenyan League, the entry of Azam and previously Startimes, the success story continues with clubs today getting more money (10 Million Shillings) that they used to get with Supersport.

The missing link remains the availability of stadiums which the government has committed to develop stadia which will propel the standards of local leagues.

Kenn Okaka is a Media and Communications Consultant and a Football Stakeholder

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