Harambee Starlets stage a sit in at the South African embassy as embassy officials allegedly delay their visas for travel to their Olympic qualifier against them on Saturday.
BY STEVE NJUGUNA
For the second time in as many months, South African embassy officials have been accused by members of the Kenya Women’s national soccer team and their technical bench of causing hindrances in the visa application process. This happened after the team and members of the technical staff protested at the late issuance of their visas as they were supposed to leave on Thursday but they had to postpone the flight to Friday.
The angry ladies and their technical team staged a sit in at the embassy as officials were reluctant to divulge information over why their visas were not prepared in time. To add salt to injury, embassy security guards started aggressively ejecting the ladies from the building. This was the second time in the recent past that the ladies have encountered problems at the South African embassy as they were denied visas on their way to Botswana via South Africa two months ago.
FKF chairman Sam Nyamweya was greatly angered as he told press that the federation had applied early and they had expected the visas to be out by Wednesday. He lamented on the fact that FKF would have to re-book the Thursday flight to Friday at an extra cost. He was also surprised at the fact that they were insisting on issuing visas on Friday while the game was on Saturday. It is reported that FKF has since applied to the South African Football Association to have the game played on Sunday.
This is not the first time there have been difficulties by Kenyans in acquiring appropriate South African documents from the embassy. Footballers Allan Wanga who was going on trial to Bidvest Wits and Paul Were who plied his trade at Amazulu also had difficulties acquiring visas and work permits.
The Harambee starlets defeated Botswana on a 2-2 (away) score line to qualify for their game against South Africa .The return leg will be played on 1st August 2015 at Kenyatta stadium.