By Erick Banda Ndenga.
Football Kenya Federation(FKF) has issued an ultimatum to Seven Kenya Premier League(KPL) clubs who have not yet resubmit their club licensing papers for review until this Friday 23rd December 2016 in order to determine their fate if they will be playing in top flight football or in the lower tiers on Tuesday 3rd January 2017.
This is according to FKF President Nick Mwendwa following the decision made in the emergency NEC committee meeting to extend the process for five days to accommodate Posta Rangers, Muhoroni Youth, Mathare United,Western Stima,Sony Sugar, Sofapaka,Thika United and newly promoted Nzoia United after they failed to meet the requirements in the previous submission. However Two clubs have already submitted.
He explained that in the spirit of fairness after finding out seven clubs were not successful the emergency committee extended the deadline to 23rd December 2016 by 12.00 PM adding that the affected clubs were informed adversely on their predicament so far two teams have already responded.
The committee will meet on 3rd January 2017 to review their application then on 4th to deliberate on the number of the teams to be featured in the league and handing the list to KPL although we might have a lesser league if they don’t meet the set requirements. But we are optimistic they will meet the requirements to stay put.
He continued that the teams who are deemed to be non compliant fail after the committee has reviewed their papers will be relegated and those who will feel that they deserve another chance will be given a period of 14 days to submit their appeals and be given a hearing.
FKK President affirmed that there is no excuse for club licensing compliance since the Federation has been communicating with clubs and the rules are crystal clear for them to adhere to adding that we will not condone any team for failing to conform to club licensing requirements within stated deadline in both KPL and NSL.
As quoted in the FKF statement “We have been going through a sensitive process known as club licensing. It applies to KPL and NSL clubs. It started in April and we had series of events ranging from brief to communication to clubs. This are not our rules but they are being implemented at FIFA, CAF and FKF so they are mandatory and not optional. 16th December was final date of submission. All KPL and NSL clubs submitted except Oserian FC, [who have since been relegated].”
“National Super League clubs have until 31 January 2017 to submit their papers but Naivasha based club Oserian will not be featured in the NSL next season after failing to submit any documents and will be relegated to Division One league adding that If you did not bring the documents then you are relegated am sorry to say that Oserian FC will play Division one next season.”
Tusker FC, Ulinzi Stars, Kakamega Homeboyz and second tier side Wazito Fc were among the first clubs to meet the requirements however successful clubs will not sleep back next season since the vetting committee will be tasked reevaluate the licence every year to ensure the clubs are compliant and clubs with provisional license are required to maintain the set standards since it expires after six months after if deemed to non compliant with face the relegation axe to the lower tiers. Tusker and Ulinzi Stars are the only teams that have so far fully complied.