Tourism Cabinet Secretary Najib Balala has cancelled the Sh20 million Brand Kenya sponsorship to the Kenya Sevens rugby team popularly known as Shujaa.
According to reports, the CS said the team embarrassed the country by blocking the ‘Make it Kenya’ brand during the Paris leg of the World Sevens Series on the weekend of June 9 and 10.
Kenya Sevens played the entire tournament with the branding of their shirt sponsor, Brand Kenya, concealed.
Apparently the action was a protest against non-payment of Sh4 million to the players.
KRU chairman Richard Omwela warned that there will be consequences for people who incited Kenya Sevens players to conceal “Make It Kenya” from on their jerseys while Chief of Staff and Head of the Presidential Delivery Unit (PDU) Nzioka Waita said that the sports ministry must find out why the Union failed to release payments to Kenya Sevens team.
“KRU should take notice that there is a new law in place regulating sports federations. We can’t allow this sort of embarrassment at the international stage,” said Waita on his Twitter handle.
They can’t let down our boys when they continue to promote our country so well,” said Waita on his twitter handle.
Omwela disclosed that Kenya Sevens were to be given a token of Sh 100,000 each that was Sh 4 million from the Brand Kenya deal. Omwela clarified that the Sh 20 million sponsorship from Brand Kenya also caters for other national teams too and not Kenya Sevens only.
Omwela said Brand Kenya had not remitted the money before the team left for the last two legs of the World Series in London and Paris. “We told Kenya Sevens that they will get their money as soon as they are back from Paris.”
The Ministry of Sports summoned Kenya Rugby Union officials after the incident, warning of serious action on whoever was found culpable of breaching the agreement insisting the team was well financed for the tournament.