Kenya: Sports Resumption to Wait a Little Longer, Says CS Kagwe

Nairobi — Despite increased calls for the lifting of the ban on sporting activities in the country, Health Cabinet Secretary Mutahi Kagwe has offered little hope, stating the ban will only be lifted once the COVID-19 infection rate comes down.

Speaking on Wednesday afternoon, Kagwe says the decision to re-open should not be led by emotions.

"There is a lot of pressure on government to open some sectors, but we must be led by science and facts rather than just feelings. For example a lot of sports people have been asking us to open sporting areas,"

"But even in those areas, even what they call non-contact sports, someone will be isolated but you will still see them making outside contact. So we have no choice for the time being and as much as we sympathize, we have no choice until we come down to a level that is understandable," CS Kagwe stated.

Last week, Sports Cabinet Secretary Amina Mohamed told Capital Sport that the re-opening of sports will only be okayed by the Ministry of Health and the latest sentiments from the chief at Afya House will mean a longer wait for sports people to make their living.

After the vaccination of more than 4,000 sportsmen, there was growing hope that the government would allow a strict resumption, but the hope now looks like a mirage even as other sectors of the economy like markets continue to operate.

Sportsmen have continually cried out that they are not making ends meet with their activities stopped, but the government has done less to re-assure them of a return.

"It has been a very tough period for players especially financially. When there are no games then there are now allowances and for some teams players have been forced to do with either half pay or no pay at all. Football is our life and now that there are no games or training, we find ourselves with longer days and nothing much to work on," Sofapaka skipper Mike Kibwage said.

Harambee Starlets who were scheduled to play a friendly match against Zambia this week cancelled the game as they were not allowed to get into bubble training like their Olympic counterparts, denying them a chance to start preparations ahead of the Africa Cup of Nations qualifiers.

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