Nairobi, Kenya (PANA) - Kenya's Sports Minister Paul Otuoma, Friday scrapped the age limit set by FIFA on Kenyan football administrators who will gun for top posts in the forthcoming national football elections.
The FIFA-endorsed Interm Electoral Board (IEB) had earlier unveiled tough guidelines set out by the world soccer governing body to be met by the aspirants.
Among the conditions was that those gunning for the chairman and vice-chairman's seats must be between 35 and 70 years.
Other age requirements for those seeking other posts are lower.
Otuoma said the age limit was tantamount to discriminating against the youth, adding that "to give everybody a chance, both the young and the old will be free to vie for the seats".
Another requirement stated that those seeking the elective posts must not hold political posts or have criminal or any other case pending in court.
The age limit locked out Mohammed Hussein who is gunning for the chairman's post. He is 34 years of age.
At the same time it appears the rule on court cases and political posts will knock out Football Kenya Limited (FKL) chairman, Mohammed Hatimy.
Hatimy is a nominated councillor of the Orange Democratic Movement (ODM), a key partner of the Party of National Unity (PNU) - the two parties that form Kenya's coalition government. He also has case pending in court.
Following persistent wrangles between FKL, a body recognised by FIFA and the government-endorsed Kenya Football Federation (KFF), FIFA stepped in and ordered that Kenya should hold an all-inclusive national football election before the end of April.
Hatimy is the FKL chairman, while Sam Nyamweya heads KFF. Both have declared their interest in the chairman's post.
FIFA directed that all stakeholders drawn from FKL and rivals KFF participate in the exercise as long as they meet the set conditions. Election date is yet to be fixed.
Football stakeholders, among them club officials, welcomed the removal of the age limit, but stressed the need for locking out
politicians and those facing criminal charges.
-0- PANA DJ/VAO 15April2011