Tuesday, January 18, 2022
Home > Counties > Taita-Taveta, Sofapaka in the process to share revenue

Taita-Taveta, Sofapaka in the process to share revenue

Taita-Taveta County is in the process of entering into a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with Kenya Premier League’s Sofapaka Football Club over the sharing of revenue generated during matches at the Dawson Mwanyumba Stadium in Wundanyi Sub-county.

The top-tier club adopted Dawson Mwanyumba Stadium in Wundanyi Constituency for playing their home matches since last year.

Fans at the stands following the match between Sofapaka and AFC Leopards. Photo by Wagema Mwangi

However, the outbreak of Covid-19 and the resultant disruptions in the sport’s sector saw several agreement plans put on hold.

County Executive Committee Member (CECM) for Sports and Gender, Vumi Ringo, said Covid-19 saw competitive sporting banned and fans barred from attending matches across the country.

As a result, plans to have formal engagement with Sofapaka FC on revenue sharing were put on hold.

However, with the gradual resumption of normalcy in the football sport, the CECM said that the plans to prepare a MoU were at an advanced stage.

“We are preparing the document which will allow us to engage Sofapaka on matters such as revenue sharing,” she said.

Noting that FIFA rules only allowed a paltry 20 per cent of the gate-collection revenues go to the county, Ms Ringo said the MoU would explore other ways the county might get additional benefits from the engagement with the club.

The CECM said the adoption of Dawson Mwanyumba Stadium by the Club has been of immense advantage to the county.

She stated that several businesses had been promoted when the team came for matches and the local youth had gained from skills transfer and exposure to professional footballing.

“The club spends money on accommodation and also has boosted talent by exposing our youth to top football skills,” she said.

She also said that to relieve pressure from the stadium, the county was planning to rehabilitate two more fields where other local teams can be training from.

There has been complaints that some local teams had been barred from accessing the stadium for training; a situation that was blamed on the scheduling of matches and training programme by Sofapaka FC.

The CECM, however, refuted claims that local teams had been denied access to the stadium stating that the facility was open for all.

She explained that several local football clubs and even some primary schools were allowed access to the Stadium.

“There is no team that has been denied access. We even have a diary of teams planning to use the Stadium to avoid clashes in scheduling of games. We have primary schools that come to do their Physical Education at the stadium,” she said.

She however clarified that restricted access is only done when the stadium is undergoing maintenance.

The CECM also noted that unfettered access to the facility was being prohibited owing to the cases of vandalism.

“We have had some challenges with vandalism and we are trying to regulate access and discourage late-night training when the guards manning the stadium are gone,” she added.

Chair of the County Assembly Committee on Sports, Anthony Warighe, confirmed that local teams were allowed access to the Stadium, depending on availability of venue.

He called for the need to establish more stadiums to relieve pressure of the Stadium which was being sought by most teams.

“The only time when local teams might be told the Stadium is unavailable is when Sofapaka has a match or is training for a match,” he said.

By Wagema Mwangi

Leave a Reply