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Africa Women Cup of Nations Qualification

FKF caretaker committee drags Otieno to DCI over 'Harambee Starlets Awcon sabotage' allegations

11:00 PM SGT 16/2/22
FKF CEO Barry Otieno.
The interim body insists the former official is to blame for withdrawing Kenya from the continental competition

The Football Kenya Federation caretaker committee chair Aaron Ringera has revealed that they have sought the assistance of the Directorate of Criminal Investigation (DCI) over the alleged acts of sabotage by Barry Otieno.

Otieno, who was serving as the FKF CEO before it was disbanded by the Ministry of Sports over allegations of fiscal management, is said to have written to Caf to withdraw the Harambee Starlets from the Africa Women's Cup of Nations.

Kenya were set to play Uganda in a qualifier before the governing body confirmed the Crested Cranes' progress to the finals - to be held in Morocco - following the withdrawal of the Harambee Starlets.

"The FKF caretaker committee wrote to the DCI on February 1 on the actions of Barry [Otieno] and requested that he be questioned on the same," Ringera told the press on Wednesday.

"To the best of my knowledge, Otieno will be appearing before the DCI for interference and sabotage because he has denied the girls an opportunity."

Ringera further announced the closure of the Harambee Starlets' training camp, which has been ongoing in anticipation of the qualifier. 

Kenya were to host Uganda on February 17 for the first leg and a return leg on Sunday before Caf wrote to Fufa informing them of the Harambee Starlets' withdrawal and, consequently, their progress into the finals.

"Having exhausted all the avenues as a caretaker committee, we are now sadly left with no other option but to disband the camp and allow the girls to go back home," added Ringera. 

"Harambee Starlets will not play in the Africa Women's Cup of Nations. Harambee Starlets are our heroes.

"You have put in your best and we appreciate your efforts. Even as we release you from the camp, rest assured that the committee is working to secure your future, and communication on the same will be issued in the near future. 

"We understand the frustration and the anger over this single act by someone who clearly has no patriotism or interest in sports at all. We are working to ensure that such a scenario does not take place again.

"We still remain committed to running the functions of FKF and fulfilling all the obligations to the best of our abilities as mandated in our instruments of appointment." 

Ringera remained hopeful that future assignments for the national team would not be affected by the wrangles between his team and the disbanded FKF executive committee.

"We will have Cecafa coming soon and we will not want to see this happening again," Ringera stated.

Kenya progressed to the second round of qualification after they beat South Sudan 15-1 on aggregate in October 2021.