Total ban for Kenya in all swimming competitions

Total ban for Kenya in all swimming competitions

After Kenya Swimming Federation (KSF) failed to organize elections as originally planned, World Aquatics, the organization that governs swimming and other aquatic sports worldwide, completely barred Kenya from competing in international competitions.

After multiple attempts to select new leaders had failed, the governing body had given the federation until 8 July, to hold an election or face being excluded from international gatherings.

Since 2014, KFS has not held elections because of disputes among the present executives, including those involving the election’s format.

Kenya was initially suspended, with swimmers permitted to compete in international competitions individually but prohibited from flying the national flag. The organization has now issued a complete ban and stopped funds to regional swimming associations.

The Center for Corporate Governance claimed that “coercion and intimation from various petitioners” was the reason they were unable to supply a returning officer for the elections that were supposed to take place last month.

“This decision was occasioned by the deliberate actions of identifiable members of the swimming fraternity within Kenya who have impeded the work of the Stabilization Committee – particularly the completion of the elective process designed to deliver a new Executive Board for Kenya Aquatics,” a statement by the Kenya Aquatics Stabilization Committee on Monday noted.

Kenyans competing in aquatic events will be governed by an Interim Management Committee (IMC) and a Stabilization Committee that FINA selected in 2019. Without a legitimately elected team in the federation.

The legal disputes involving the sport, have involved injections provided to halt the election of new officials.

The elections were halted on 7 July, 2023, despite the fact that Sports CS Ababu Namwamba had chosen a five-person team to assist with the voting, thanks to a public notice that was published in the newspapers and included a case filed at the High Court of Kenya.

Following the prohibition, stakeholders have expressed their dissatisfaction and fury.

Maureen Owiti, a candidate for the presidency of the federation, accused unidentified individuals of bullying the returning officer, who did not turn up.

The swimming community was disappointed by the failure of the election, so she has urged immediate action to solve it.

“We appeal to all higher offices concerned not to lead us to a path where no magic will be performed where others have failed,” she noted.

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