Kenya: KRU Await Ministry Report to Decide League Fate

Kenya Rugby Union (KRU) will know whether to conclude the 2019/20 season or not basing on a much awaited report on the resumption of sports activities in the country.

Sporting action was halted in March as the government moved to put in restrictions towards curbing the spread of Covid-19 disease.

KRU would then in April cancel the 2019/20 season owing to the Covid-19 pandemic but the union was forced to rescind the decision after protest from local rugby clubs.

KRU chairman Oduor Gangla told the Annual General Meeting (AGM) that was held virtually on zoom on Wednesday that they are still in consultation with the government to know when it is safe for action to resume.

Sports Chief Administrative Secretary Hassan Noor Hassan warned last week that the release of a report on the resumption of sports activities in the country will take a little longer as they wait for the return of Sports Cabinet Secretary Amina Mohammed from Geneva, Switzerland this week.

Amina travelled to Geneva where Kenya has pitched her for the post of director-general of the World Trade Organisation (WTO).

"Many are keen to know when rugby will return. I don't have the answer today but we continue to engage the Government and soon there will be a pronouncement on the way forward. After that we will sit and engage with stakeholders to see a way forward for our game," Gangla said.

KRU's AGM was held virtually in line with the government's Covid-19 pandemic restrictions. The virus had by Thursday killed 235 people in the country.

During the meeting, members welcomed the Administration Police Rugby team, the Warriors, as its newest member, becoming the 49th full affiliate.

"We have watched AP Warriors go from strength to strength over the last three years they have been playing. We are happy to welcome them into the rugby family," said Gangla.

Addressing the meeting on finances, treasurer Joshua Aroni said the Union generated income of slightly over Sh215m in the last financial year, a slight drop from the Sh227m realised in the previous year.

Aroni said this was after the KRU Board made a decision to invest Sh45m under a money market investment with the Britam Fund.

"The Board thought it wise to put the money there so that we can generate some funds in terms of interest that we could use to help run the Union in the short term," said Aroni adding that the Union has been forced to hugely scale down its operational costs through 50 per cent reduction of staff salaries. "Some have been sent on compulsory leave due to the Covid-19 pandemic."

Aroni said the Union's finances will be greatly hit in this financial year as there are no finances coming in due to lack of fixtures and related activities.

The Union has also opted to retain PKF as its auditors for the next financial year, but members asked them to negotiate for cheaper rate due to the prevailing financial situation.

"The volume of work will also be reduced because there hasn't been much activity so it will only be prudent for them to look at the cost of their work," noted Nondescripts chairman Auka Gacheo.

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