SSMB lifts ban on AFC Leopards

Ingwe will now take on rivals Gor Mahia in local derby at Kasarani on May 12 after SSMB moved to lift the indefinite ban of using it's facilities following crowd trouble

By Dennis Mabuka

Sports Stadia Management Board (SSMB) have handed AFC Leopards a reprieve by lifting the indefinite ban on the club using its two facilities – Kasarani and Nyayo stadia.

This move means AFC Leopards will now host arch-rivals Gor Mahia at either Kasarani or Nyayo in a local derby on May 12 starting 3pm.

SSMB Public Relations Officer Rakki Asman has revealed to that AFC Leopards had met all their demands hence ‘the decision to lift the ban.’

“All we wanted is AFC Leopards to pay for damages caused in the two stadia by their fans and they have agreed to compensate payable in installments. They have also come up with a strategic plan on how to deal with their fans going forward and that means they have met our demands.”

“A letter confirming that SSMB have lifted the ban will reach the team before end of today (Monday),” added Asman.

SSMB had imposed an indefinite ban on the team from using its facilities following damages caused by club fans during the opening fixture against Chemelil Sugar at Kasarani and against the same team in a top 8 match at Nyayo Stadium.

During the aforementioned matches, Ingwe fans went on the rampage vandalizing 70 seats at Kasarani and also causing destruction at Nyayo Stadium.

But a letter dated May 03, 2013, addressed to SSMB acting (CEO) Gabriel Komora and signed by AFC Leopards Secretary Winston Kituyi, confirmed the club’s commitment to pay for the damages estimated at Sh300, 000.

The letter stated in part, “We acknowledge existence of crowd trouble in your facilities and property damaged as a result of these isolated incidences.”

 “AFC Leopards undertakes to pay your demands, not as admission to liability but as an acknowledgement of a possibility of such occurrences by dysfunctional fans in fields of play.”

“We therefore, agree to pay a fee of two hundred and forty five thousand shillings only (Sh245, 000) and fifty thousands shillings (Sh50, 000) as per your demand notes in three installments (given our current financial position) before July 31st 2013.”

“Kindly reconsider your decision to ban us from using your facilities as we make steps in conjunction with Kenya FA in stemming crowd trouble and vandalism in stadiums.”