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Fifa warns FKF over parallel leagues

World football governing body, Fifa has warned of sanctions if Football Kenya Federation (FKF) does not resolve the raging tussle they have with the Kenyan Premier League (KPL) over the running of the country’s top club football competition.

In a letter to the FKF president seen by Nairobi News, Fifa secretary general Jerome Valcke acknowledged that “the world football body’s support in the process of whether the KPL should have 16 or 18 participant club had come to an end following FKF’s criticism of the report compiled by Fifa’s independent expert consultant and given FKF deemed itself capable of finding a local solution”.

“In this context we would like to remind you again that this matter is now for FKF to resolve on its own with the relevant stakeholders in Kenya,” Valcke said.

Valcke said that Fifa expected FKF to find a local solution that was acceptable to “all relevant stakeholders and “in the best interests of Kenyan football.

Valcke reiterated that the role of FKF was to organize and supervise football in all its forms at the national level, as well as to control association football in Kenya as provided under Article 18 paragraph one of the Fifa Status.

FIFA STATUTES

He said leagues to a Fifa member must be subordinate to and recognized by that member as provided under the Fifa Statutes.

“FKF must comply with the Fifa Statutes and any violation of the above obligations may lead to sanctions as provided under Article 13.2 of the Fifa Statutes,” Volcke wrote.

The letter was dated February 11 and was in response to FKF’s correspondence to Fifa over the possibility of Kenya having two parallel leagues in the 2015 season – FKF Premier League and KPL Premier League.

The wrangling parties have already released parallel fixtures. The 18-team FKF Premier League begins this weekend with two fixtures, Kakamega Homeboyz hosting Post Rangers at Bukhungu Stadium on Saturday and Nakumatt entertaining Shabana at Machakos’ Kenyatta Stadium on Sunday.

The 16-team KPL action begins on the weekend of February 21-22 with a full raft of eight matches on the cards.

KPL have vowed to get on with their league despite warnings by FKF to sanction any club and match official who participate in their competition.

KPL kicked off their season on Wednesday with the DStv/SuperSport Cup between league winners Gor Mahia and Cup holders Sofapaka at Nyayo Stadium. Gor Mahia won 2-1.