Hassan Wario, the Cabinet Secretary for Sport, has officially disbanded the National Olympic Committee of Kenya. This comes after the NOC was accussed of grossly mismanaging the team that competed at the just-concluded 2016 Olympics in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.
Furthermore, the Cabinet Secretary has called for an investigation into the matter, and transferred the duties of the Committee temporarily to the Sports Kenya Management Board. The investigating team is required to present its findings by Sept 30.
The athletes at the games were treated very unprofessionally, and there have been various complaints. Among them are the ‘mishap’ that nearly led to javelin silver medallist Julius Yego missing his flight to Rio, mismanagement of paperwork that nearly cost sprinter Calvin Nkanata his place in the team, and the fact that several runners, including reigning 1.500m world champion Asbel Kiprop, had to make personal arrangement to travel to Brazil for the Olympics.
This move has been welcomed perhaps most enthusiastically by the Kenya Coaches Association, who felt most aggrieved by the behaviour of the NOCK. Most of them were frozen out of the team that travelled to Rio, and a few that made their way there were not given official recognition when they reported to the Athletics Village, meaning they were unable to access their athletes.
The Cabinet Secretary has exonerated himself from any blame, saying his ministry was not directly responsible for organizing the team’s logistics for the games.