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Africa Cup of Nations

Kenya warned interference in FKF election will lead to Fifa suspension

4:10 PM MYT 24/10/2019
Eric Ouma of Harambee Stars and Kenya vs Mozambique.
The world football governing body wants all matters pertaining to dispute resolutions done within the framework provided by its regulations

Fifa has warned Kenya will face suspension should the upcoming Football Kenya Federation (FKF) national elections receive interference.

The elections have faced numerous hurdles with a recent case seeing George Mwaura seeking court help to have chairman Edwin Wamukoya and member Elynah Shiveka barred from overseeing the December elections.

Before, dissatisfied aspirants had registered their opposition to the newly-passed electoral code of conduct arguing it was setting the podium in favour of incumbent Nick Mwendwa.

The matters are still pending in a Nairobi court awaiting judgement but Fifa has warned such moves may see Kenya suspended from international competitions.

“We refer to your [FKF) letter dated 19 October 2019 by means of which you informed our services of an alleged third-party interference in the affairs of the Football Kenya Federation (FKF) and more specifically its ongoing electoral process," Fifa said in a letter to FKF and seen by Goal.

“In particular, we note a complaint has been recently filed by a local stakeholder against the FKF to the Sports Disputes Tribunal, seeking to annul the adoption of the electoral code and the nomination of the electoral board [first instance and appeal level] both of which were, according to the official minutes you [FKF] provided, approved unanimously by the FKF delegates present during the annual general meeting (AGM) on 5 October 2019.”

“In parallel, we also take note an appeal has been lodged a few days ago by an individual against the FKF before the High Court in Nairobi, essentially with the same purpose.”

The world football governing body also told Kenya's FA to ensure all such matters are addressed within the legal framework provided by Fifa's statutes.

“We consider it of utmost importance to refer you to art. 69 of the FKF Statutes according to which 'Disputes within the [FKF] or affecting leagues, members of leagues, clubs, members of clubs, players, officials and other [FKF] officials shall not be submitted to ordinary courts unless the Fifa regulations, [the FKF statutes] or binding legal provisions specifically provide for or stipulate recourse to ordinary courts',” the letter continued to read.

“The aforementioned article is in line with one of Fifa’s core principles, that is, the prohibition of recourse to ordinary courts of law, unless specifically foreseen by Fifa regulations or binding legal provisions.

“Fifa takes this principle with the utmost seriousness and therefore considers it is the responsibility of the member associations, including the FKF, to ensure it is implemented at their level through binding obligations on its members.”

Harambee Stars, therefore, risk being barred from competing in the 2021 Africa Cup of Nations (Afcon) and the 2022 Fifa World Cup qualifications should the election matters be settled outside the Fifa-provided legal mechanism.

“We further wish to underline a violation of this obligation by the FKF or its members may lead to sanctions as provided for in the Fifa Statutes, including a possible suspension,” Fifa concluded.

“In this context, should the High Court of Kenya render a decision which goes against the aforementioned principle, the matter will be brought to the attention of the relevant Fifa bodies for consideration of suitable measures and possible sanctions in line with the Fifa Statutes.”