David Shariff @PeopleSports11
Kenya Judo Association officials are up in arms over unpaid allowances and awards fees for players that have accumulated since 2017.
The association says players from different categories have attended various championships including East Africa Judo Championship in Bujumbura, Burundi but their allowances have not been paid to date.
Speaking in Kwale during the county Judo Championship last weekend, deputy president of the association Duncan Chimirio said the players have lost morale due to the current situation and want government to come to their aid.
Chimirio further said that judo is one of the fastest growing sports in the country with over 20 clubs in place but financial constraints is slowing them down. The association is now focused on encouraging junior players to join the sport to promote discipline.
Chimirio claims to have consulted the government over the current predicament on several occasions but realised the Sports Ministry’s hands are tied as they cannot directly allocate funds to the association without a proper budget.
Zablon Masha, a senior coach and manager at Kwale Judo Club, who organised last weekend’s championship, said the problem has seen players forced to go round with begging bowls whenever an event like that nears.
“It is a shame for such a sport to have players borrowing funds from locals and yet the government has a ministry which is supposed to fund and promote sports in the country,” said Masha.