KORIR: Work cut out for new sports CS Achesa - Daily Nation

Work cut out for new sports CS Achesa

Thursday February 8 2018

Rashid Achesa. He is the Cabinet Secretary nominee for Sports. PHOTO | FILE |

Rashid Achesa. He is the Cabinet Secretary nominee for Sports. PHOTO | FILE |  NATION MEDIA GROUP

By BARNABAS KORIR
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I want to take this early opportunity to welcome the nomination of Rashid Achesa as Cabinet Secretary for Sports.

I hope his arrival comes with a bag full of goodies for sportsmen and women. I must confess I don’t know Achesa personally, but I’m told he was at one point involved in sports and I assume he is a sports lover.

A story is told of how he rose from a novice boxer to a national champion.

This is a good start for us because I believe he is already aware of what sportsmen and women go through in this country.

CLEAN UP THE MESS

I am also told he is a lover of athletics and that subject is very close to my heart. Like any other Kenyan, I have expectations and I want to assume he will live up to the billing.

The minister is coming in at a time when sports facilities are such a big debate.

He is coming in at a time when the country has just lost the opportunity to host the Africa Nations Championship (Chan) and expectations are that he will clean up the mess.

But as I always say, It is one step at a time and the new minister will have to choose his priorities right if he is to revive the glory of the sports docket.

I want to advise him that it’s not a bed of roses, and that he will have to consult widely and correctly in order to make progress.

We are all looking at him especially at this time when sports sponsorship is scarce.

SportPesa recently pulled out from a number of disciplines and as usual they will expect him to plug in the gaps as the government had promised. This is being a busy year and especially us in athletics, we expect him to give us total support if we are to fly the country’s flag even higher.

Before he settles, we will be competing in the Africa Cross Country Championships in Algiers.

Remember, we have the national cross country trials this Saturday and I wish he can come and witnessed live the calibre of talent we have, even though he has not gone through the Parliamentary vetting just yet.

Again, the Commonwealth Games are coming up in April in Gold Coast, Australia, and we will be featuring prominently. Besides the two, we have the Africa Athletics Championships in Nigeria and the World Under-20 Championships in Tempere, Finland.

Doping is the other subject that won’t go away any time soon and he will have to deal with it.

For now, I can only wish him good luck.

Welcome waziri!

Korir, Athletics Kenya’s Nairobi branch chairman, is also head of Kenya’s team to the 2018 Commonwealth Games: [email protected]