The government through the Ministry of Sports has been challenged to upgrade sporting facilities so as to make the Kenyan football leagues competitive and tap raw talent among the youths.
Stakeholders urged the government to ensure that available sporting facilities are improved instead of rushing to construct new ones and later abandoning them midway over various factors.
Clifton Miheso, a midfield maestro who has been exposed to both European and African football leagues says the difference between Kenyan Leagues and international leagues is like day and night in terms of infrastructure.
The fourth-year student pursuing International Relations at Zetech University said Kenya is miles away from matching international standards when it comes to modern sports facilities.
Speaking at Zetech University during the varsity’s annual trophy issuance ceremony, Miheso urged the Kenyan government to improve and modernize the available facilities to make the Kenyan League more competitive.
“Maybe we are on the right track but the difference in terms of infrastructure is a bit huge, the stadia are so good outside there, there are high levels of training.
Of course, we have to do something if we want to compete with the rest of the world; we have to improve our infrastructure, which is the big difference. It is a shame that even Harambee stars cannot play host at the moment,” He said.
The diplomat, who is currently under a contract with Police FC, has played competitive football in Portugal, Finland, South Africa, and Zambia.
On his part, Zetech Vice Chancellor Prof Njenga Munene said the government should invest heavily in sporting facilities as a way of fighting alcoholism and other social ills including immorality and crime.
“Now that it has been established nearly half of our population is in the business of drinking, the national and county governments should invest heavily in sports and entertainment places apart from bars where most men troop to drink after work,” said Prof Munene.
Munene said that Kenya is ranked poorly among other neighboring countries when it comes to sports facilities and other social entertainment activities, adding that people should be encouraged to take part in all sorts of positive pastimes like music, drama, and indoor games.
Gaspo Women head Coach Jacob “Ghost” Mulee lauded their varsity’s management for the continued support of sporting talent through their Sports Scholarship Programme and encouraged sports personalities to advance their education levels.
“Sports is currently the highest paying job in the world. It is a privilege to get a sports scholarship in a university such as Zetech because it is a God-given talent.” he highlighted.
The event saw the Zetech Sparks Basketball team, runners-up in the concluded Kenya basketball federation women’s premier league and who will represent the country in Kigali, Rwanda at the Africa Basketball Championships, feted for their achievement by GRIA Insurance who offered to be their shirt sponsors for the upcoming season.
Kenya Footballers Welfare Association (KEFWA) chair James Situma emphasized the importance of discipline in the success of any player. “Winning in any sport is a process that takes time and is not instant” he stated, adding that stardom only lasts for a short time and players need a solid educational grounding to prosper.
The Zetech Sparks football team resumes its fight for the Kenya women’s premier league in August while its Basketball counterpart will be challenging for the women’s basketball title, with notable players such as Puren Anyetu, Madina Okot, and Mary Lisa receiving call-ups to the national teams.
By Kamau Njoroge
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