Kenya in solo bid for 2017 Afcon

Kenya has submitted a solo bid to host the 2017 Africa Nations Cup after failing to agree on a joint bid with its East African neighbours Tanzania, Uganda and Rwanda.
Kenyan international Collins Okoth, seen here playing for Gor Mahia during the Cecafa Kagame Cup tournament in Kigali mid this year. Kenya is bidding to host Afcon 2017. (T. Kisambira)
Kenyan international Collins Okoth, seen here playing for Gor Mahia during the Cecafa Kagame Cup tournament in Kigali mid this year. Kenya is bidding to host Afcon 2017. (T. Kisambira)

Kenya has submitted a solo bid to host the 2017 Africa Nations Cup after failing to agree on a joint bid with its East African neighbours Tanzania, Uganda and Rwanda. 

The Federation of Kenya Football (FKF) submitted a 10-page document to the Confederation of African Football (Caf) in Cairo hours before the deadline on Tuesday, September 30.

Kenya will face competition from Ethiopia, Zimbabwe, Algeria, Ghana and Mali.

War-torn Libya declared in August they would not have the capability to host the biennial tournament since they cannot guarantee the security of participating teams, fans and officials.

“Our bid documents, including a documentary showcasing our sports facilities and other requirements is already at Caf headquarters and we are confident that we have put up a strong case to host Africa’s greatest football event,” FKF Chief Executive Officer Michael Esakwa said in a statement.

Esakwa said they used a strong team comprising of Kenyans and other international consultants to draft the bid adding that government supports the efforts.

The competition’s hosting rights were made available to the 52 Caf member states last month by the continental body after Libya, which had been endorsed to stage the event, voluntarily withdrew citing security issues in the country.

Kenya won the hosting rights for the 1996 edition and a secretariat was set up at Nairobi’s Nyayo National Stadium but due to political influences the Government of the day led by retired President, Daniel Arap Moi, withdrew support.

As punishment, Kenya was banned from the next two editions and the event was taken to newly independent South Africa, who went on to win the trophy for the first time with a 2-0 victory over Tunisia in the final.

The Safaricom and Nyayo stadiums in Nairobi, Moi Stadium in Mombasa, Kichoge Keino in Eldoret and the recently refurbished Moi Stadium Kisumu are listed as the hosting venues for the competition should Caf grant Kenya’s request.

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