Nairobi News


Ababu Namwamba under fire from Kenya Kwanza MPs

There is no respited for Cabinet Secretary for Youth Affairs, the Arts and Sports Ababu Namwamba after he was grilled by Members of Parliament from Kenya Kwanza over his perceived failures.

Among those who’ve taken an issue with Namwamba’s activities as Cabinet Secretary are Uasin Gishu Woman Representative Gladys Boss Shollei, Nandi Senator Samson Cherargei and National Assembly Majority Leader Kimani Ichung’wah (Kikuyu Constituency).

Earlier on Tuesday morning, Ms Shollei faulted Mr Namwamba for the hardships that Kenyan athletes have faced at the ongoing World Athletics Championships  in Budapest, Hungary.

“This is something I feel very strongly about, coming from Uasin Gishu where most of the athletes come from. It’s very painful. I listen to them. Every time they’ve landed home – from Boston and London Marathons – they’ve come to my home here in Kitisuru where I hosted them because no Cabinet Secretary or anyone is there for them – I host them. If you look at my Facebook page, I’ve hosted them for breakfast, they’ve sat through lunch and they’ve told me their challenges and when they tell you the horror stories of what happens to them…” Shollei said.

“They fly economy and the Athletics Kenya and Ministry officials are flying business class and first class, sometimes they have a layover of 14 hours and even seeing the management of sports at the moment- it’s painful,” Shollei added.

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The Woman Rep also cited the national team that went to Tunisia for the beach games as another examples, saying the team was sent abroad with fake Adidas shoes which she believes were bought from River Road in downtown Nairobi, an area known for manufacturing knock offs of various products.

“If you also look at the team that went to Trinidad & Tobago, again they were wearing fake uniforms. It just leads you to ask, by the time a country reaches a point where our athletes are wearing fake uniforms, there is really something wrong with the management of sports. When you get to the point that doping is rampant in the country, yet, I’m from Uasin Gishu and I’m telling you – the chemists that issue these drugs to our young people are known. The coaches that issue these drugs are known. Why is that they have not been arrested?” she posed.

She said young athletes knew nothing about doping but it was those around them that provided them those drugs under the guise of them being supplements.

Shollei also claimed that the Talanta Hela App, a feature of the program that falls under Namwamba’s docket, does not exist online despite the Ministry claiming they had launched it.

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On Sunday, Senator Cherargei accused Mr Namwamba of mismanaging the Sports docket. Three days earlier Mr Ichung’wah slammed Mr Namwamba over claims of bulldozing his way through traffic in fuel guzzlers flying government flags and escorted by Subaru police vehicles.

“It is extremely sad that such good ambassadors of our country can leave our country without due recognition by the Ministry in charge of that responsibility. To make matters worse, they go represent our country out there, they win, come back and not a single officer in the Ministry or the Minster himself have the decency and courtesy to receive them at the airport; and even to recognize and appreciate the good work that they have done for our country,” Ichung’wah said.

He also apologized to Kenyans and the sports men and women who represent the country – on behalf of the government – for how the Sports docket operates, vowing to summon Namwamba to answer to Parliament why he lacks the time to attend to people representing Kenya abroad.

In response Senator Cherargei said: “Tonight I echo sentiments of Hon. Ichung’wah Majority Leader National Assembly that CS Ababu continues to mismanage into oblivion our beloved sports. How can ministry officials fly first class with their girlfriends to Olympics Budapest, Hungary, at the expense of our athletes? Our female athletes being exploited sexually & economically! Parliament must summon CS sports to avert disastrous mismanagement of our sports!”

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