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Resume sports with care

Friday July 10 2020
By EDITORIAL

The advisory committee on the resumption of sports activities in the country is expected to present its report to Sports Cabinet Secretary Amina Mohamed on Monday.

The 25-member team chaired by Sports Chief Administrative Secretary Hassan Noor Hassan has engaged key stakeholders, including sports organisations, and collected views on the ideal protocols to be put in place before resumption of sports activities. We believe Hassan’s team has done a good job.

Kenyan sportsmen and women have not been spared the effects of Covid-19 and are bound to lose close to Sh5 billion this year owing to the recess caused by the crisis.

Our athletes have lost appearance fees, prize money, endorsements and contracts with sportswear firms. Football, rugby, hockey and basketball players  have gone without salaries since in March this year and this has brought untold suffering.

We laud the government for moving swiftly to cushion these athletes with a stimulus package of Sh54 million from the Sports, Arts and Social Development Fund, which has seen close to 2,500 sportsmen and women and technical officials benefit from cash and food donations. But this won’t be enough as compared with the reopening of the sports facilities.

World Marathon record holder Eliud Kipchoge and former Harambee Stars captain Musa Otieno, who has suffered Covid-19 and has just been discharged from hospital, have called for the partial reopening. Already, golf competitions have resumed in some clubs, with Covid-19 restrictions in place.

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But precautions in accordance with the Ministry of Health rules will be needed if sporting action is to resume in the country.

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