Uhuru finances K’Ogalo’s trip to Dar es Salaam
President Uhuru Kenyatta has come to the rescue of cash-strapped Gor Mahia offering to cater for the team’s air tickets for the entire 30-man contingent that will be travelling to Tanzania for the forthcoming Kagame Cecafa Club Championship.
The tickets were availed through the Ministry of Sports, Arts and Culture on Tuesday evening during a fundraiser at the Railway club in Nairobi where Sh 2.1 million was raised.
Surprise guest of the day Gatundu South MP Moses Kuria donated Sh 200, 000. Gor Mahia chairman Ambrose Rachier thanked the President for his kind gesture adding that the move will motivate the players to perform well after it initially appeared as if the trip would have failed to materialise.
Mr Kuria caused prolonged laughter when he said: “We might disagree on many issues but not on Gor Mahia. He disclosed that a new stadium is being constructed in his constituency, which when complete will host Kenyan Premier League (KPL) matches. The MP implored Gor Mahia executive to consider using the stadium once it becomes operational next year.
The Gatundu legislator further disclosed that he will offer himself for the position of Football Kenya Federation (FKF) National Executive Committee (NEC) member for central region.
Also in attendance were FKF Presidential aspirants Gor Semelang’o and Nick Mwendwa who donated Sh 100, 000 and Sh 200,000 respectively.
Semelang’o promised to revamp football if given a chance in the forthcoming elections noting that he will clamp down on corruption in football.
Other contributions came from former presidential aspirant Peter Kenneth, Leonard Mbiuki, Tom Odoyo and Homabay politician Cyprian Awiti who sent Sh 100, 000 each.
Gor Mahia has been grappling with the issue of finances to fund for the team’s trip to the regional event that begins this week in the Tanzania capital of Dar es Salaam.
K’Ogalo begin their campaign in the tournament on Saturday in Dar es Salaam against host club Young Africans (Yanga).
Other teams that Gor Mahia will play against in Group A of the tournament are KMKM (Zanzibar), Al Khartoum (Sudan) and Telecom (Djibouti).
Kenyan clubs have become notorious for using fundraisers as a means of generating income, especially in the wake of diminishing investor confidence in the local football management.
This is in stark contrast to the global trend where sponsorships, gate collections and sale of merchandise are the main sources of generating income.
This year alone, Gor Mahia has relied on a Sh 2 million bailout from President Kenyatta and Kenneth, to enable them honour continental assignments.
AFC Leopards – the other popular football outfit – were also forced to stage a fundraiser last month, in a bid to offset a Sh 12 million debt that was slowly forcing the club’s operation to ground to a halt.
Then there is Shabana, another team that has already held a fundraiser this season – realizing Sh 4 million. This amount isn’t enough and word has it that the FKF Premier League club will be extending the begging bowls again anytime now.