Government pays Kenyan players' arrears
Kenya's players have finally received about two-thirds of the money owed to them from the 2003 World Cup and the 2004 ICC Champions Trophy after the government, and not, as reported elsewhere, the Kenyan Cricket Association, paid a lump sum of US$41,000 to help clear the arrears.
Wellingtone Godo, the permanent secretary in the Ministry of Sports, said he hoped the payment would boost the team's morale ahead of next week's Intercontinental Cup tournament in Namibia. "The money may not be enough," he said, "but we hope it will motivate the team to do well in the coming event."
It was these arrears which led to the players' strike in 2004, an action which help escalate the demise of the old KCA regime headed by Sharad Ghai.
The news came at the same time that the ICC finally released the remaining US$100,000 it owed under the old Project Kenya scheme. That had been withheld after serious issues arose about the way earlier funding had been used by the old regime. A strict condition of the final payment was that the money had to be put towards identified development projects and could not be used to clear existing debts.
The KCA has inherited debts of at least US$500,000 from the Ghai regime, and there are almost no assets. Much of the paperwork for the final period of Ghai's tenure has gone missing, and as a result it has not been possible to finalise accounts for 2004. As a result, the ICC is withholding quarterly payments of US$13,000 due to the KCA, arguing that without such financial details, it cannot hand over any more money. In the meantime, Ghai is due in court soon to face changes of stealing around US$3.3 million from the KCA in 1999.
Martin Williamson is managing editor of Cricinfo