Kenya withdraw from African Women Cup of Nations

Kenya on Wednesday withdrew its national women’s team from this month’s African Women Cup of Nations qualifiers against Uganda after failing to get the team reinstated by the Confederation of Africa Football (CAF).

The government-sponsored caretaker committee had appealed to the continent’s football body to allow the Harambee Starlets play the final round qualifier against the Uganda Crested Cranes in Kampala on February 17 after the sport’s governing body in Kenya, the FKF, pulled the team out in January.

Kenyan sports minister Amina Mohammed said last month that a “suspected fraud” was behind the team’s sudden withdrawal from the competition as no such request had been authorised by the government.

But on Wednesday, the committee chairman Justice Aaron Ringera said officials had “exhausted all avenues” to find a solution that would allow the team to participate in the qualifiers.

“We are now left with no other option than to disband the camp and allow the girls to go back home,” Ringera told a news conference.

“Harambee Starlets will not play in the AWCON qualifiers.”

As a result, the Uganda Crested Cranes will now automatically qualify for the finals to be held in Morocco in August.

In November, Mohamed disbanded the FKF over corruption allegations and appointed the caretaker committee to oversee the sport in Kenya for a period of six months.

The FKF’s suspended chief was later charged with corruption, accused of embezzling millions of Kenyan shillings.

Kenyan football has long been beset by financial woes often stemming from poor management and corruption, while Kenya’s men’s national team have failed to shine on the pitch.

AFP

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