Badminton players are seeking government intervention to get back in the field one year after the Badminton World Federation (BWF) imposed a ban.
Last year, BWF imposed a ban on badminton players following leadership wrangles in the Kenyan Federation.
The ban meant that Badminton Kenya was deprived of its ability to vote in the BWF general meetings, would not receive funding or membership grants as well and will not enter into competitions directly.
Through a letter, BWF stated that the ban would only be lifted on the condition that the parties involved are able to organize free and fair elections as per the world requirements.
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“As per article 5.5 and 13.5 of the BWF Constitution, the BWF Council has decided to suspend Badminton Kenya from the BWF membership,” BWF SG Thomas Lund explained in a letter dated March last year.
Reports reaching Kahawa Tungu reveal that efforts by players to restore sanity in the Federation have been futile with the government turning a deaf ear. Apparently, officials are sabotaging efforts to conduct free and fair elections hence plunging the players into more suffering.
“We have a big problem in badminton. We got banned by the badminton world federation one year ago until badminton Kenya conducts free, fair, transparent and all-inclusive elections. They have refused to do the elections or do anything about the ban and now it is the players who are suffering,” a source who sought anonymity disclosed.
“We need all the help we can help because for that one whole year it has been played down and there is no potential that these people will do anything about it so that we can get reinstated and players resume playing,” the source added.
The players are now calling on the government, more so the Sports Ministry to come to their aid so that they go back to playing and fending for their families through that.
They also want to meet the National Olympics Committee to streamline operations going forward such that a similar crisis can be avoided.
“There is one time we took a letter to the ministry of sports and we were told to follow protocol and that it is the chairman badminton Kenya who is the contact person on matters badminton around the country. The same person who has refused to act on the matter so that the ban can get lifted and the players can resume playing,” the source added.