Kenya: AFC Leopards Denied Access to Nyayo Stadium

18 February 2020

Cash strapped AFC Leopards have been ordered to repair the damages their fans caused at the Moi Interactional Sports Centre, Kasarani three months ago before they are allowed to host their matches at the refurbished Nyayo stadium.

The damages were incurred during their first leg Mashemeji Derby in November. Ingwe fans went on the rampage and destroyed chairs and other stadium facilities after their 4-1 humiliation at the hands of K'Ogalo.

Sports Stadia Management Board Chairman, Fred Muteti, confirmed that they had received the letter from the club through the Ministry of Sports requesting they be allowed to use Nyayo, but Muteti insisted that they will only consider the request once repairs have been done.

"Our aim is to eradicate hooliganism and that is why we told them to pay for the damages first before we can consider their request. I am currently monitoring the ongoing repairs at Nyayo stadium, but they must comply with our direction first," said Muteti.

Leopards Secretary General Oliver Shikuku said the ban has hit the club hard and they can't afford the Sh2 million required to cater for the damages as stipulated by the stadia management body.

"They have told us to pay Sh2 million which we can't manage because of the hard financial times we are going through. We even proposed that we pay Sh100,000 for every home match till the end of the season, but they have refused," said Shikuku.

AFC, who won 1-0 against Elim on Sunday to advance to the round of 16 pf the Betway FKF Cup competition, will be camping in Western Kenya and Shikuku says they don't have money to finance their stay there.

"Due to unavailability of Nyayo, we shall be camping in Mumias for our league matches against Sofapaka and Chemelil Sugar. It is hard for us financially as we still don't have enough money to sustain us during that duration," he added.

The club is now appealing to fans and well-wishers to help raise Sh400,000 they need for their stay upcountry.

The 13 times Kenyan Premier League champions had last month announced they will not be playing their home games at Kenyatta Stadium, Machakos due to low revenue in gate collections.

They have been unable to use the stadium since 2017 when the renovations started. Sports Cabinet Secretary Amina Mohamed had last month said the refurbishment will be finished by the end of March.

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