Match fixing: FIFA strikes lengthy ban on KPL trio, and Mandela

The World football governing body, FIFA has slapped bans on three Kenyan players and a Ugandan after investigations into match fixing accusations in the Kenyan Premier League (KPL) in 2019.

Kakamega Homeboyz defenders Moses Chikati, and Festus Okiring along with midfielder Festo Omukoto, who recently switched to Western Stima from Homeboyz, have been handed four year bans from football while George Mandela, a Ugandan, has been slapped with a life ban.

In January 2019, after a run of poor results, Kakamega Homeboyz chairman Cleophas Shimanyula stirred the KPL when he sacked Ugandan coach Paul Nkata, his Ugandan assistant Hamza Kalanzi and midfielder George Mandela, over match fixing claims and assured of enough proof for the same.

Confirmation

Nkata would then flee to his native Uganda as Allan Wanga and goalkeeper David Juma took charge of the team. The release by FIFA confirms just what Shimanyula had alluded to.

“The formal disciplinary proceedings against the aforementioned individuals stemmed from an investigation into various matches from the Kenyan Premier League in 2019. This investigation was conducted by FIFA through its Integrity Department with the consent of and in cooperation with the relevant stakeholders and authorities.

“The findings of the relevant decisions were notified to the concerned individuals today”, FIFA posted on Tuesday 4 January, 2020.

Mandela-Nkata axis

Mandela, who served under Paul Nkata at Nairobi City Stars, Muhoroni Youth and Tusker FC was handed the heaviest ban after being found to be a central player in the vice.

“In particular, given his central role in the conspiracy, the player George Mandela, Uganda, has been banned from taking part in any kind of football-related activity at national and international level (administrative, sports or any other) for life,” the report notes.

For Chikati, Okiring and Omukoto, the four-year ban covers all national and international duties.