Rachier: We shall not rescind degree requirement

Gor Mahia chairman Ambrose Rachier is adamant that a degree from a University is a minimum requirement to vie for an elected position at Gor Mahia. And he is adamant that the club will not turn back on the position despite protestations from Judith Nyangi who is interested in vying for the position of treasurer.
Additional reporting from the Nation

Gor Mahia chairman Ambrose Rachier maintains the club will hold its forthcoming elections under a new constitution that dictates all elected officials must, among other qualifications, possess a university degree.

This requirement has, however, been opposed in some quarters.
Outgoing organising secretary Judith “Nyangi” Anyango, who is eyeing the treasurer’s seat, vowed to challenge the new document at the Sports Disputes Tribunal (SDT).

The Kenyan Premier League champions will head to the polls on August 8, and Rachier, who is gunning for a fourth term in office asserted that the new constitution had already been deposited at the Sports Registrar’s office.

The senior city lawyer, who has been at the helm of Gor for the past decade, also fell short of confirming whether or not he will serve for a final if re-elected.

“There is no turning back,” said Rachier.

“This club is no longer governed under the Societies Act and the Sports Act 2013 demands we register as a sports organisation. We have to align our constitution with the (Sports) Act, which we did last year when members met at Jukwaa Lounge and adopted what is now commonly known as the ‘Jukwaa Constitution’.”

As opposed to the previous constitution which had 11 elective positions in the club’s National Executive Committee (NEC), the new document provides from five elected positions namely chairman, vice-chairman, secretary-general, treasurer, and organising secretary.

An elected official will serve for four years, and not three as is currently the case.

“Someone is trying to lock us out (of office) and he is using this degree thing,” said Anyango, a diploma holder.

“But we will not allow that. Most members of parliament and County Assembly do not have degrees and yet they handle more sensitive and taxing roles. I will petition the Registrar and move to the SDT,” said Anyango

Rachier also said the club members will for the first time virtually elect the new officials via mobile phones, owing to a government ban on public gathering to tame the spread of Covid-19.

“Technology is key in today’s world. I’m virtually studying my Master’s degree at Trinity University in the USA. I am in my third year and yet have never set foot at the institution in Illinois,” said Rachier.

“It will be a cheaper and transparent exercise. We do not need the police as there will be no unruly people.”K’Ogalo is one of the most popular and successful football club in East Africa.

Both Dolfina and Nyangi posted their qualifications online


Erastus Okul urges Rachier to allow new leadership

Erastus Okul (pictured above with James Orengo), who was Rachier’s immediate predecessor as Chairman is asking Rachier to allow new leadership so that new ideas can be brought to the club

Additional reporting from the Nation

Former Gor Mahia chairman Erastus Okul has waded into the upcoming club polls and opposed the candidature of his successor Ambrose Rachier in the elections slated for August 8.

Okul, who handed the mantle to Rachier in 2009, says it is time another individual takes over since he feels the former has done enough and achieved a lot at the club in his 11 years at the helm.

“I am advising Rachier to leave Gor Mahia and hand leadership to a younger generation. He has won titles and stabilized the team, this notion that the club cannot survive without him is scaring people from going for the position. He should let other people rule,” Okul told Nation Sport from his home in Kendu Bay, Homa Bay County.

Rachier has already announced his intention to defend his post and was recently quoted as saying it would not be fair to leave the club before it becomes financially stable.

Under his reign, Gor has won seven Kenyan Premier League titles and managed a quarter final berth in the Caf Confederation Cup in 2018.

The 71-year-old Okul, who also served as Kenya Premier League chairman, dismissed the attainment of degree as a condition for every aspirant to vie for the four posts up for grabs.

The four positions are Secretary General, Honorary Treasurer, Chairman and Vice Chairman.

“The issue of degree doesn’t apply in club leadership and should be struck out. Why was the constitution passed without our input as individuals who served the club in the past,? he posed.

“Any person interested in a post should be allowed to vie and majority of club members should be allowed to elect a leader of their choice,” added Okul.

He also asked for the exercise to be postponed to a later date to give all members an opportunity to participate because of the current state of coronavirus pandemic in the country.

The new Gor Mahia constitution stipulates that all aspirants for various posts should have a degree before being cleared to vie.

The issue has created divisions among supporters of outgoing club organising Secretary Judith ‘IMF’ Anyango, fondly known as Nyangi, who is interested in the honorary treasurer post.

Anyango, who doesn’t have a degree, has promised to raise her complaint with the Sports Registrar and take it to the Sports Dispute Tribunal if the new constitution will be used in the elections.

She further alleged that there is a plot to lock her out of the elections because of the thorough oversight role she has played in the last four years as a Gor Mahia official.

The electoral board has already been put in place to oversee the election and only those who will have registered by Monday midnight will be allowed to vote during the polls.


Gor Mahia to streamline bloated EC

Gor Mahia is moving closer to implementing its new constitution as they have decided to erase several positions that have existed in the club since its formation in 1968. These were positions that were created in order to bring as many wealthy or well connected officials on board as possible. These wealthy officials were then expected to support the club financially. Thus in the 1960s, 70s and 80s, these positions were occupied by ambitious political aspirants, businessmen and people at the top of corporations who were useful in getting players employment at parastatals like the Postal Corporation, Railways and KPLC. Of late however, these positions haven’t served a useful purpose.

Additional reporting from the Nation

Gor Mahia has announced that it will do away with most of the official positions within its management when the club holds its long overdue elections in August.

This is among the decisions that the club arrived at during a virtual Executive Committee meeting held on Tuesday.

Presently, Gor Mahia’s has a bloated management which the club now intends to whittle down.

As per Gor Mahia’s constitution, the posts which will be contested for during the election are the Chairmanship, Secretary General (who will also act as club CEO), Treasurer and Organising Secretary.

This means that club CEO post, currently held by veteran administrator Lordvick Aduda, will be scrapped after the August elections.


Other posts which will no longer exist are Senior Vice Chairman, First Vice Chairman, Second Vice Chairman, Deputy Secretary General, Assistant Deputy Secretary General, Assistant Organising Secretary and Assistant Treasurer.

Rachier, who took over from his predecessor Erastus Okul in 2009, is expected to defend his seat with other candidates also expected to contest.

Kisumu-based engineer and the club’s Second Vice Chairman George Ong’udi, who a section of fans have been fronting for the top seat, recently told Nairobi News that he has not made up his mind whether or not to run for the post.

During Tuesday’s virtual meeting, the club urged its fans to register as members in their numbers so as to participate in the exercise.

Gor Mahia last held its elections in December 2016 at Kasarani gymnasium where Rachier won by 579 votes against his closest challenger Chrispine Omondi who got a paltry 157 votes. The term of the current office bearers ended in 2018.


Landlord Harassment chased me away from Gor Mahia

Ghanaian attacker Francis Afiriyie who left Gor Mahia during the first leg of the 2019-2020 season explains why he left Gor Mahia suddenly even after vowing to stay

Additional reporting from goal.com

The Ghanaian joined the Kenyan giants but left after half a season for Botswana

Francis Afriyie has revealed he left Kenyan Premier League (KPL) giants Gor Mahia due to harassment from the landlord.

Afriyie joined Gor Mahia before the start of the 2019/20 season and went on to score six goals in 11 matches. The Ghanaian, now at Township Rollers of Botswana, joined Gor Mahia when the club was operating in a tough financial environment.

“I did not leave Gor Mahia because of pressure. I was happy at that team but I left because of certain issues. I did not leave because of salaries or non-payment but because of the landlord issues,” Afriyie told Africa Sports TV.
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“The landlord kept provoking me as he used to come and lock my door. At one point he locked the door and said he would not let me in even to access my things inside.

“I would have stayed with Gor Mahia even for the issues to do with the money but the harassment from the landlord was provoking.

“I terminated my contract mutually with Ambrose Rachier [the Gor Mahia chiarman].

The Green Army signed the forward, 24, from Murcielagos FC and he has revealed why he left Mexico for an African league.

“Let me tell you something, in life, everybody has got his own love to do something. I left Mexico because my contract had finished and did not want to extend it,” he added.

“I also wanted to leave Mexico and come to Africa and play and my aim was to get a football club in Ghana.

“My bigger aim was to play for Asante Kotoko in Ghana but again if I had played for Asante Kotoko I would have been a good boy and I did not want to be a good boy.”

Afriyie also says he does not regret making the decision of joining Gor Mahia and gave reasons why he preferred the record KPL champions.

“Mexican clubs were chasing me but Gor Mahia acted very fast. They spotted my agent somewhere and started negotiations fast,” he concluded.

“My agent was categorical that if only I would go to Kenya and play that was very fine.

“Choosing Gor Mahia over Mexican clubs is a decision that I will never regret. You know Gor Mahia are one of the biggest teams in Africa.”

Afriyie was signed at the same time as Gnamien Yikpe of Ivory Coast.


Gor Mahia to hold elections on August 8

Gor Mahia will hold elections in just over a month. Given the short notice and given that club has only 400 members, Rachier is highly likely to defend his seat.

Additional reporting from the Nation

Kenyan Premier League champions Gor Mahia will hold their elections on August 8.

The date was agreed on after a virtual Executive Committee meeting held on Tuesday and chaired by long-serving Chairman Ambrose Rachier.

“Following the Executive Committee meeting today it has been decided that the club’s elections will take place on August 8, an Electoral Board will be put in place to oversee the polls which will be conducted under the new constitution,” part of the resolutions of the meeting read.

According to Gor’s constitution the positions to be contested are the chairman’s, the secretary general-cum-Chief Executive Officer (CEO), the treasurer and organising secretary.

That means that CEO’s post currently held by Lordvick Aduda would become null and avoid after the elections.

Other posts which will no longer exist are senior vice chairman, first vice chairman, second vice chairman, deputy secretary general, assistant deputy secretary general, assistant organising secretary and assistant treasurer.

Rachier, who took over from his predecessor Erastus Okul in 2009, will defend his seat. Other interested aspirants are expected to announce their candidature.


Gor Mahia to hold Virtual Meeting to elect EC members

Gor Mahia Chairman Ambrose Rachier has called a hurriedly assembled virtual meeting to be held on Tuesday meeting.

Additional reporting from the Nation

Gor Mahia will on Tuesday afternoon hold a virtual members only meeting with the main agenda being the election of the Executive Committee members.

Through a notice sent to the club’s registered members, Chairman Ambrose Rachier said members will receive a link to the virtual meeting before the meeting slated to begin at 3pm.

“You are hereby invited for an online June 30, 2020 from 3pm-5pm. The Agenda is Elections of Executive committee members of Gor Mahia and AOB,” the notice reads.

However, the main agenda has raised suspicion among K’Ogalo fans with some questioning the short notice for the meeting and the urgency that made the office to call for it.

But club assistant Secretary General Ronald Ngala told Nairobi News said there will be no elections during the meeting, but just discussions on the matter.

“There will be no elections but we will discuss how to start preparing for one after the situation normalises. It is just a brain storming session on the way forward concerning the club elections,” said Ngala.


There have also been calls from opposing camps for the club to hold elections and elect new officials with each camp aligning themselves to candidates they would want to clinch various positions.

However, a section of fans through the club’s social media platforms have read mischief into the matter.

Gor Mahia constitution stipulates that elections of Executive Committee Members can only be done after club elections, which have also not been conducted.

As such, all Gor Mahia officials are currently in office illegally after their two-year term expired in 2018.

The meeting comes a few weeks after Ngala removed all members who have not renewed their registration from the club’s WhatsApp group.


Rachier: I will not leave until the club is on firm ground

Gor Mahia chairman Ambrose Rachier has indicated that despite saying he would leave the club, until he calms the financial storm that has been bedeveling the club since last August when sponsors Sportpesa pulled out of local football.

Additional reporting from the Nation

The veteran K’Ogalo boss reveals he will leave the Kenyan champions as soon as they steady the club

Gor Mahia chairman Ambrose Rachier has openly claimed he will not leave the club anytime soon.

On many occasions, Rachier has come out to state he is keen to leave the position of chairmanship at the Kenyan Premier League (KPL) champions, something that has never materialised.

Earlier this year, Rachier confessed he was thinking of handing over the mantle of running the club to a new chairman, but the elections were later postponed leaving him in office.

On Saturday, Rachier now said he will only leave Gor Mahia when they have solved the problems they are facing financially.

“It is quite true that last year on several occasions, not just once I indicated I will hand over the leadership mantle of Gor Mahia to another chairman in an election that would have been held sometime early this year,” Rachier told reporters after the team was hosted to a luncheon at a Nairobi Hotel.

“But what then has transpired is that our boat has been locked, I have been the captain of the boat and the boat has been rocked, first by the departure of the sponsor and now the coronavirus pandemic and for that reason, I have decided as a captain you do not let the boat sink when you are kind of directing it.

“We are going to look at different aspects here and there and when the boat is stabilised I will still carry out my intention, that is to leave, and that is my position, that I am still running Gor and will run it to a point I think it has been steadied because if I leave it now, in the situation it is, I will be accused of neglect.”

Rachier further clarified during the function that new title sponsors Betsafe will start bankrolling the club when the new Kenyan Premier League (KPL) season kicks off.

On Thursday, the Kenyan champions, along with their sworn rivals AFC Leopards, signed a partnership deal with the betting firm that will last for the next three years, with K’Ogalo set to pocket KSh55million per year while Ingwe will receive KSh45 million.

“As things stand now, we don’t have anything to give back to the new sponsor because there is no football being played,” Rachier told reporters after Gor Mahia’s players were hosted in a luncheon on Saturday.

“What we agreed on when signing the deal, is they will only be able to start funding the club when football resumes, and that can only be possible when our league starts again.”

Rachier further revealed the club was working on ways to reduce their monthly wage bill, which currently stands at Sh5million, by half.

“We have 35 players who are in our payroll and we must have Sh5million every month to clear their salaries and this is becoming a bit too much for the club to handle, so our aim, for now, is to try and reduce it to at least half,” Rachier continued.

“If you ask me, I would prefer our wage bill to stand at Sh3million a month because we can try to handle it.”

“Rachier also called on Gor Mahia fans to register as members in big numbers so they can directly help support the team financially.”

Gor Mahia and AFC Leopards have been struggling since SportPesa, their previous sponsor, left, leaving the club to depend on fans, members, and other well-wishers to honour matches and settle players’ allowances at times.


Rachier: No relief for the players yet

Eliud Owalo and Ambrose Rachier

Gor Mahia chairman Ambrose Rachier has indicated that the the club will not receive any of the sponsorship money from Betsafe until football activities resume.

Additional reporting from the Nation

Gor Mahia Chairman Ambrose Rachier has said the club is still in the red despite unveiling a Sh55 million sponsorship deal on Thursday last week.

He said the club signed a pact with betting firm Bet High Kenya Limited, under its leading brand, BetSafe, but the money will only be released after the football league resumes. Football Kenya Federation (FKF) abruptly halted the league following the coronavirus outbreak.

In total, Gor Mahia will receive Sh165 million over three years, but Rachier said: “Please do not be blinded by that money because we still have a big problem.

“Our agreement with the sponsor is that we will give them visibility. So disbursement of funds will happen when football resumes. The sponsor cannot pay us for sitting at home during this period of the coronavirus pandemic. The problem is, we do not know when the games will next begin.”

The veteran football administrator spoke on Saturday during a luncheon organised for the players by management consultant, Eluid Owalo.

Before inking the BetSafe deal, the Kenyan Premier League champions struggled financially for the entire 2019/20 season owing to a lack of sponsorship and meagre gate takings.

Owalo gave the players and technical bench, who have not been paid their salaries for the past five years, a Sh250,000 token.

“I have received several distress phone calls and decided to have lunch with the players to encourage them because, at the moment, it is tough for everyone. Gor Mahia is a big brand and we must adopt a business model to run the club. We can become the Barcelona or Arsenal of Kenya, but it requires a paradigm shift. Let us not be resistant to change,” Owalo added.

He promised to assist Gor Mahia to engage in an income generating business so that the club remains afloat and does not rely on sponsorship in the future.

He said that it was time for the giants of Kenyan football to become self-reliant and be in the same league with the best clubs in Africa and Europe.

“If Arsenal can do it, Gor can equally do it. If Barcelona can do it, why not Gor Mahia?” he asked.

Gor coach Steven Polack, official Judith Nyangi, Team Manager Jolawi Obondo and a host of players attended the luncheon.

Acting captain Joachim Oluoch, who spoke on behalf of the players, thanked Owalo for his kind gesture.

Gor midfielder Clifton Miheso said, “We live moment by moment. The government recently gave us something and now fans are coming in to support us.”

Gor were crowned the 2019/20 KPL champions by Football Kenya Federation (FKF) which also cancelled the league citing a government directive on social gathering.


Polack: It is not realistic to restart the league

Gor Mahia coach Steve Polack has urged the KPL officials to be realistic about the fate of the 2019-2020. According to Polack, it is not possible to restart the

league now and then start the new season in August.

Additional reporting from the Standard.

Gor Mahia head coach Steven Polack claims it is realistically ‘impossible’ for the 2019/20 Kenyan Premier League (KPL) season to be played to its conclusion.

The conclusion of the current KPL season has been thrown into doubt owing to the coronavirus that is ravaging the world.

KPL which was supposed to end on May 23 was suspended in March with Gor Mahia sitting at the top with less than ten round of matches to go.

While Football Kenya Federation (FKF) president Nick Mwendwa cancelled the league and declared Gor Mahia the champions as well as announced Nairobi City Stars’ promotion back to the topflight football in April, KPL Limited whose mandate to run the league expires on September 24 2020, have maintained that the league will not rush a decision over how this season will finish.

This is subject to a ruling by the Sports Disputes Tribunal (SDT) on the status of the current season slated for June 30

But President Uhuru Kenyatta’s recent decision to extend both the nationwide dusk- to-dawn curfew and the cessation of movement in to and out of Nairobi and Mombasa counties to June 30, has further thrown the league and FKF Betway Cup’s conclusion into doubt.

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And it is on this premise that the British-Finnish tactician has urged the concerned football authorities to make a quick decision on the fate of the current season.

“Let KPL and FKF sort themselves out. But if they say we play, we will play. I’m confident in my players and staff. So, if they say we are playing tomorrow or we are starting in a few weeks then we will start,” Polack said after receiving his delayed February coach of the month award yesterday.

“But I think they need to look at the bigger picture before they make a big decision like that because they said the new season is supposed to start in August. So, if we have to wait for the president to make the decision on June 30, then we will have to train for four to five weeks and that takes us to August.

He added: “That means, the season won’t finish until either September or October. By the rules which I have read, after the last game of your season, you need to have 60 days before the first game of the new season starts.

“So, basically that means we will start the new season in January. So, they need to take a good look at that and make the decision very quickly not only for Gor Mahia but for the whole football in Kenya.

“I don’t know what they are waiting for because this has been going on for three months now yet you tell me that you don’t have a plan A or B in case of a lock down.”

Asked about Gor Mahia plans ahead of next season’s CAF Champions League, the former Asante Kotoko coach said: “First of all, we have to look at the players’ contracts. Some of their contracts are running down, so we need to know those ones we are going to keep or release. But we need to learn from the last CAF competition, we need to strengthen our squad because it’s not easy to play in those competitions.

“Basically, from my coaching experience, we need to get stability to go forward. If you look at the big teams in the world, they don’t keep on changing ten players every year because it’s impossible.

“But if you keep doing that, I don’t care which club you are, you won’t win anything. Therefore, it is my hope that we will keep hold of most of the players we have and make a few additions for next season.”


Gor Mahia and AFC land a sponsor

Gor Mahia and arch rivals AFC Leopards, who have been struggling are set to get some financial relief. This after they entered into a sponsorship deal with a new betting company.

Additional reporting from the Nation

Kenyan Premier League giants Gor Mahia and AFC Leopards have entered a new sponsorship deal with gaming company Bet High Kenya Limited under their leading brand, BetSafe.

Bet High, who are yet to start their operations in the country, will bankroll Kenya’s biggest community clubs for the next three seasons.

Record KPL champions Gor will get Sh55 million per season while Leopards will receive Sh40 million.

Bet High Kenya Limited will be launching its operations in the Kenyan market under the brand name Betsafe in the near future and has made it a priority to support football from grassroots level to the top-flight league.

“We will be launching in the Kenyan market very soon and our top priority is to support Kenyan football. Being a responsible gaming provider since the very beginning we aim to bring more engagement and excitement together with Gor Mahia and AFC Leopards in the near future,” said Tom Bwana, Public Relations and Partner Manager at Bet High.

The sponsorship will come as a big relief for both clubs who endured tough financial times during the 2019/20 season with players going without salary for several months.