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Sports CS Ababu Namwamba summoned to Parliament for ‘neglecting’ athletes

National Assembly Majority Leader Kimani Ichungwah has accused Sports Cabinet Secretary Ababu Namwamba of neglecting athletes who represent Kenya at international meets.

In a rare public attack by one government official against the other, Ichungwah castigated the CS for ‘not doing his job’ in aiding athletes with the best possible preparations and climate to compete on the international front.

“You were not made a minister to fly flags in the street, push and bulldoze your way through traffic with subaru escorts. You were made a minister of Sports to serve sportsmen and women in our country,” said a visibly irritated Ichungwa.

“It is sad that such ambassadors (the athletes) the best who represent us, can leave the country without due recognition of the ministry charged with that responsibility,” he added.

The Kikuyu lawmaker, who is a close ally of President William Ruto, went on to chide the CS and officials in his Ministry for not keeping tabs with developments in the sports arena. Ichungwa told Namwamba that appearing busy is ‘not an excuse’ to make athletes suffer at international assignments.

He further accused the Sports Ministry of sending ‘broke’ athletes to represent the country without the courtesy of processing their allowances in advance.

“To make matters worse the athletes go represent our country, they win, comeback and not a single officer in the ministry or the minister himself has the decency and courtesy to receive them at the airport. All ministers are busy. If you are the minister of Sports your core business is managing our sportsmen and women,” said Ichungwa.

The UDA lawmaker was reacting to a situation where athletes with disabilities who have been participating in various competitions complained of consistent neglect from the government.

Some of the athletes told the media they were owed allowances, while others moaned that they always arrive late during competitions, thus affecting their preparations.

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