There is no escaping mismanagement and shame upon the Athletics Kenya as long as the same officials remain in charge. Fresh from the latest scandal to hit the National Olympics Committee of Kenya (NOC-K) it has led to Sports Cabinet Secretary, Mr. Hassan Wario disbanding the entire committee. Kenya managed to be top performing African nation in the just concluded Rio Olympics and were 2nd overall in track and field events only behind Team USA.
Even before the Olympics begun there were screwed travel arrangements for Julius Yego, the javelin World champion. Kenya Airways had to let him board the plane without a ticket after the management officials messed up his travel plans. This in itself wasn’t a good show as social media rants grew immensely after the incident. Not only that, Nike an official multinational sports corporation offered plenty of training gear and kit to the National Olympics Committee but athletes complained of not receiving any. It is said that the officials sold most of the attire and only offered less than half to the participating athletes.
The Kenyan athletes showed great patriotism and spirits as they ignored all else that was happening off the track and put on a brilliant display. This was the highest tally of medals that she had ever achieved since the inception of the Olympic games (6Gold, 6Silver and 1Bronze) to bring a total of 13. No sooner had the celebrations begun than they were over. A group of Kenyan athletes were left stranded in Rio after the games. In a dilapidated part of the capital, where they complained about hearing gunshots in the middle of the night.
Wesley Korir, an MP for the Cherangany Constituency in Kenya and a runner who did not finish the men’s marathon in Rio, expressed his outrage at being made to stay in conditions he believed to be below-standard. The MP said he called Kenya’s sports minister but he didn’t pick up. The Sports Cabinet Secretary Hassan Wario was questioned by police over the Olympics on Wednesday after complaints of ticket fraud, accreditation inaccuracies, gatecrashers travelling to Rio using resources for athletes and that the uniforms were stolen. There were complaints over how the athletes were treated during the Olympics in general.
Some of the athletes have returned home safely, including Marathon winner Eliud Kipchoge while many others are still awaiting cheap flights back home. It is very disappointing to see Kenyan officials still making the tabloids over such allegations. A couple of other officials have been arrested for questioning after Wario recently disbanded NOC-K. Police earlier announced the arrest on Friday of Francis Paul, secretary-general of the National Olympic Committee of Kenya (NOCK), his deputy James Chicha and Stephen Ara Sou, who headed the Kenyan delegation to Rio.
A probe has been formed to find out what happened and are meant to report back on the 26th of September. Let’s all hope for change and less corrupt officials, definitely the indefinite ban on the National Olympics Committee is a step in the right direction.