Drama as Kenyan official orders Super Eagles’ detention
THERE was drama at the Jomo Kenyatta International Airport Tuesday morning after Football Kenya Federation’s (FKF) CEO, Micheal Esakwa, instructed security details to detain the visiting Nigerian national team.
According to the Daily Nation of Kenya, the stand-off started after the Super Eagles contingent rejected transport and accommodation availed to them by FKF upon touching down just minutes before 2am, terming the services ‘sub-standard’.
Esakwa, however, stood his ground, insisting the West Africans had to stay at the 680 Hotel located within Nairobi CBD until dawn when they would be allowed to change their hotel.
“CAF and FIFA rules dictate that the host federation, in this case FKF, provides hotel, accommodation and security to any visiting team during the duration of their stay.
“In this case, we have already booked you into a hotel in town and for security reasons cannot allow you to drive within town at this hour,” Esakwa said.
The visitors, however, refused to budge, and instead boarded a luxury coach provided by the Nigerian High Commission in Nairobi before speeding off, but were stopped just few metres away by security.
“We have travelled 40 hours from America and the players are very tired, I humbly request you to let them go have a rest where the Nigerian mission had booked as we try seek an amicable solution.
“I am told the place you have booked us is not the best,” a weary looking Nigerian coach, Stephen Keshi, pleaded with Esakwa.
The stand-off lasted close to 45 minutes, before Esakwa later made a call to someone he referred to as ‘mkubwa’. After some consultations, the CEO eventually gave in to the demands and the African champions, escorted by four Nigerian Embassy vehicles, sped off towards Hotel La Mada, where the team had booked.
Earlier, all the Super Eagles players seemed to read from the same script when asked to comment on the eagerly anticipated clash set for Wednesday.
Captain Vincent Enyeama and Celtic defender, Efe Ambrose, speaking separately, both described the eagerly anticipated clash as ‘very difficult and interesting assignment’.
“Kenya have really improved and it is going to be a tight contest with little margin of error for any team, the proceedings could be very interesting,” Enyeama said.-ngrguardiannews.com/