Former Agro Chemical official and Mutiso announce they ready to unseat Mwendwa in upcoming elections
Sports journalist laughs off proxy claims as he announces his presidential bid.
Football Kenya Federation (FKF) presidential aspirant Bonface Osano and his running mate Innocent Mutiso have denied claims that they are being used as proxies by the current regime to validate the upcoming elections.
Osano, a sports journalist and analyst, became officially the latest entrant in the flooded presidential race when he announced his candidature in the company of Mutiso, a former Gor Mahia winger, at Ufangamano Hall, Nairobi yesterday.
Osano,34, had to fend off claims of being a close associate of FKF president Nick Mwendwa. Mutiso, on the other hand, is said to have voted for the incumbent when he was the chairman of the Kenya Footballers Welfare Association (Kefwa) in 2015.
The national polls, which are slated for October 17 as per last week’s FKF Electoral Board chairperson’s Kentice Tikolo statement, have twice been nullified by the SDT for violating the Fifa Standard Electoral Code and section 46 (6) as read with Paragraph (d) of the Second Schedule to the Sports Act and Article 81 of the Constitution of Kenya 2010.
And as the dynamic duo was announcing their candidature, other presidential aspirants were at the Sports Disputes Tribunal (SDT) agitating for changes to be made to the controversial Electoral Code by the stakeholders.
“Of course the bone of contention has been the eligibility criteria. But when you look at the communication from the FKF Electoral Board, they spelt it out very well and for me I am qualified. I’m somebody, who has been in the game since 2016. So, I don’t fear because I’m qualified, I’ve ticked all the boxes including chapter six of the Kenyan constitution and I’ve all my papers intact,” Osano told Standard Sports.
“Therefore, let’s take the game where it should be, which is on the pitch and not courts. We can’t just continue being in courts. We are not going to continue politicking forever, we need to move on.”
Osano laughed off the ‘proxy’ accusations saying that he is his own man.
“Nothing could be further from the truth. Football is a game for everybody and once you are in it you will interact with people. By the way, the past regime are the people who have been in power, so how can you be part of the game if you don’t interact with them at all levels? So, it cannot be true just because I’ve expressed my intentions to vie for the top seat that somebody must be behind me. I also have my ambitions and a conviction that I’ve something to deliver for the Kenyan football,” he said.
“The rules and the eligibility criteria have been there since 2016, so it’s not something new to us. I don’t want to raise a storm in an empty cup. So, why should I be doing all the side shows yet at the end of the day it’s the delegates who are going to decide not the courts. You can do all the things you want to do but when you reach the ballot it’s the delegates who are going to vote. Football is not just about Nairobi or a few individuals who keep on filing cases every time, but the whole country.”
Mutiso added: “Well I guess this is because when I was Kefwa chairman in 2015, we voted for the incumbent. But what many people don’t know is that it was a unanimous decision by Kefwa members. I was just tasked to vote. But as a former footballer, I’ve every right to stake my claim. Even if I voted for the incumbent in the past elections, don’t I have my own ambitions? I still believe I have a lot to offer to the Kenyan football because what we expected is not what we got and right now we have a chance to take the game to the next level.”