Harambee Stars captain Victor Wanyama has landed a sliding and career-ending tackle, by exposing Football Kenya Federation (FKF) for slicing Sh12 million from the Sh50 million the goverment awarded the players for qualifying for the 2019 Africa Cup of Nations (AFCON).
The amount was part of the Sh244 million shillings the State allocated to the national team’s qualification and participation at last year’s continental finals in Egypt.
Amazingly, the FKF insisted the dough did not include match bonuses.
And in a stunning tackle by the Montreal Impact midfield enforcer said Monday Nick Mwendwa- led federation has not been honest in handling their unpaid Sh10 million winning bonuses against Tanzania (3-2).
Prior to the tournament in Cairo, the players had been promised Sh250,000 bonuses each for a win or a draw.
In a tell-it-all interview on Madgoat TV on Monday, the former Tottenham Hotspur and Southampton man let fly crunching tackles; revealing, how the federation had hoodwinked them before taking a share of the AFCON qualification reward for their ‘administrative costs.’
Wanyama’s response follows a scathing attack by fiery Stars left-back defender Aboud Omar for making decisions without involving his teammates.
“It has been quite a journey at Harambee Stars since we started off the AFCON qualification in Sierra Leone. But it is very disrespectful when a player (Abud Omar) accuses me of not involving the players in making decisions yet I invited them for a round-table negotiations meeting with the federation on how to share the Sh50 million reward,” said Wanyama.
“I did this because I knew where we were coming from as a team, what the players had gone through and what efforts they had put in to achieve that feat; so, every player deserved something valuable.”
He added: “I would like to clear the air so that everyone knows exactly what transpired. During the round-table meeting, the federation wanted to give us Sh35 million and take Sh15 million for their administrative costs but I blatantly refused.
“I felt it was unfair to exclude those who were part of the journey because they also played a role in our qualification. I stood my ground in front of the players and told the federation that everyone who was involved in the qualification must get the cash.
“I told the federation I will not allow them to mistreat the players under my watch. I asked them to give us Sh45 million but they refused before we agreed at Sh38 million. I then asked them to use the remaining Sh12 million to reward those players and officials like Stanley Okumbi who were no longer part of the team. I promised to confront them if I found out that they didn’t live up to the ‘agreement’.”
Asked about the contentious issue of the unpaid winning AFCON bonuses, Wanyama said: “The federation told us that we were supposed to be paid by the government. When the CS (Amina Mohamed) visited us in Cairo, she assured us that we will get our bonuses. But as a captain I can only ask the federation and not the CS.
“The FKF president (Mwendwa at the time) talked to me and promised to engage the ministry to release the allowances. I had set the Comoros game as the deadline for the payment of those allowances unfortunately the coronavirus pandemic broke out.
He continued: “I personally like handling things professionally and that’s why you have never seen me rushing to the media because I know I’m always in control of everything. But I told the president he will carry his own cross when the players start protesting. I will then go to the media and expose everything.”
Wanyama further revealed that he intervened for the treatment of South Africa-based defender Brian Mandela and Gor Mahia’s Philemon Otieno, who got injured while doing duty for the national team.
“In regard to Mandela, I’m the one who pushed for his travel to Egypt. They wanted him to go back home, but I told them off. I told the coach, FKF president and physio to organise for his operation in France where we were camping because they had better treatment facilities. They had planned to fly him to Nairobi after the operation, but I again refused and told them if they don’t want to cater for his expenses I will do so. That’s how they changed their plans and catered for all expenses including his travel and stay in Egypt,” he said.
“I also tried my best to intervene Philemon’s case but I heard the tables were turned. I twice called the president and asked him to help the player recover from the injury. He told me that Philemon came with the injury to the team, but he had asked him to be patient as he looks for ways of catering for his treatment. He claimed Philemon made a blunder when he went to press.”