The state rolled out the initiative to help players cope with the adverse effects brought about by Covid-19
Nzoia Sugar goalkeeper trainer Peter Mwaura Nzoia has thanked the government for assisting Kenyan Premier League (KPL) players with a three-month KSh10,000 package.
Nzoia Sugar were among the beneficiaries of the government’s payout that was aimed at helping the footballers cope with the adverse effects of the coronavirus.
The KPL, among other leagues, were suspended in mid-March owing to the restrictions implemented to contain the spread of Covid-19.
The suspension disrupted the players’ sole source of income before the state stepped in and made the promise to assist the stars with a three-month package.
Mwaura said the move was good for the players who “had been overlooked for many years”.
“We want to thank the government for the token they sent us. It will go a long way in helping the players during this Covid-19 period where they cannot make a living through other economic activities,” Mwaura told Goal.
“I also want to thank the Sports Cabinet Secretary [Amina] Mohammed for this noble gesture. Sportsmen have been overlooked for many years and for once they have been appreciated.”
The gesture from the Ministry of Sports and Culture was praised by some football stakeholders while others claimed the package was too small for players who may have gone for months without pay.
Football Kenya Federation (FKF) presidential aspirant Sam Nyamweya was the first one to criticise the move and said the package needed to be revised upwards.
“Ksh 10K for each beneficiary is grossly unfair, the ratio between the salaries of older married veteran players with wives plus children is at least 3:1 and between a senior coach and young player at least 6:1 or higher,” Nyamweya said in an earlier press statement.
“That ‘one-size-fits-all’ approach makes for bureaucratic simplicity and real-world absurdity.
“The inclusion of only five club officials is grossly unfair and every KPL club has at least 10-15 technical bench members and administrative staff. On what grounds were the other five to10 coaches and officials been excluded?”
But Herbert Mwachiro, another figure eying the top FKF seat, commended the process.
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“It’s a great step from Sports Cabinet Secretary Amina [Mohamed], it shows that the government is listening and this is the kind of proactive leadership that sportspersons have been waiting for,” Mwachiro said.
“Setting up the fund and actualizing the distribution of money to players within such a short notice is commendable. This fund has come at a time when footballers have been having it rough and it’s impressive that the private sector has also heeded calls from the government.”