Football delegates will convene in Mombasa on November 18 for the Football Kenya Federation Annual General Meeting, which will be a defining moment for a sport that until recently suffered stifled growth arising from a lack of resources for development and archaic policies.
However, the 2017 AGM, which will be chaired by FKF president Nick Mwendwa has the potential to change the future of the sport by adopting a progressive constitution, tailor made to not only conform with both the Fifa and Caf statutes but also the 2010 Kenyan constitution.
This, the draft constitution aims to achieve these by limiting the term of both the FKF president and the National Executive Committee members to a maximum of three terms of four years each in accordance with both Fifa and Caf statutes.
The draft also seeks to improve on service delivery and football development across the country by increasing the number of branches from the current 20 to 48, not only to be in line with the 2010 constitution but also to align football administration with existing government structures, key in the implementation of football grass-root projects.
Further, the draft constitution also proposes for a more inclusive role of football stakeholders, by increasing the number of women and National Super League (NSL) delegates, as well as expanding the National Executive Committee, the highest decision making organ, by co-opting two members, establishing two additional electoral seats, to be occupied by a NSL and woman representative respectively.
The federation has also put forward a proposal to have all NSL and Division One clubs promote youth development by having a specified number of youth players in their clubs.
If implemented the aforementioned will not only be in line with world football best practices that champion for the development of home grown players but will also offer the said players the much needed platform to hone their skills and showcase their talent.
The initiative though still unfamiliar in Kenya, has the potential to propel youth football development across the country, as is the case in the UK where it has largely been successful under the Home Grown Player Rule, which is an initiative by the England FA and the Premier League that demands for more domestic players to be a brought up from a younger age in hopes of creating more talented home grown players.
Currently, the Premier League does not have a maximum restriction on the number of foreign players allowed on a team, but does require at least eight homegrown players.
In light of the aforementioned, it is therefore fair to say that, if adopted the new FKF proposed constitution will herald a new dawn for Kenyan football as it will be more inclusive, progressive and in tandem with modern football best practices.