James Magayi @PeopleSport11
A faction jostling for control of AFC Leopards has kicked up a storm by galvanising the Ingwe faithful against the current leadership.
Former chairman Mathews Opwora and six others including Suleiman Angulu, Susan Wamalwa and Moses Wanami sought to take over club leadership on an interim basis after the current office, which is led by chairman Dan Mule, failed to call for elections in August.
“The current office is running the club illegally. They registered a new constitution last year but there is no transitional clause in it. So the constitution talks about three office holders while we have 10 that were elected under the old constitution.
An election ought to be conducted to operationalise the new constitution and that should have happened in August going by the Registrar’s advice,” Suleiman Angulu explained.
“We just want to set things straight by taking over in interim capacity and organising elections within three months. We have already written to the registrar but she is yet to reply,” he added.
It has, however, emerged that the office sought an extension from the Registrar to fulfil the conditions set out in their registration certificate but the opposing faction is having none of it.
Opwora’s camp hit the roof yesterday when a picture of Mule heading to Liverpool, England to attend last night’s friendly match between Gor Mahia and Everton started circulating on social media.
A section Leopards’ supporters were angry at Mule for flying to the United Kingdom to cheer their bitter rivals instead of building Ingwe to fight for the league title that has eluded them for 20 years and qualify for such high profile international engagements.
“AFC was not formed for its chairman to support Gor. It was formed to beat Gor left right and centre, win trophies and make the community proud and represent the nation. See what Mule has done.
Gor is beating AFC left, right and centre. Those who are supposed to be bereaved are now fans of our rivals. There is no way (Gor chairman Ambrose) Rachier can do this, take it to the bank! Rachier understands this culture,” a fan wrote on Facebook yesterday.
Gor and Leopards share SportPesa as shirt sponsors and Mule may have been invited for the trip by the betting firm but fans are not taking it lightly.
Mule’s woes are compounded by the fact that he does not come from the traditional Luhya community where Ingwe’s core support lies. He has endured a torrid time since his election in 2016.
Some have promptly singled out Mule’s trip to signify what they perceive as inept leadership at the club.
Tribal politics has always been at the heart of Leopards leadership problems with various factions fighting over the control of the club, leading to unending wrangles.
Mule was seen as someone who would transcend the inter-tribal politics and bring stability to the club but he seems to be running into the same problems the club was running away from when he was elected.