CS Wario’s Threat to Gaming Companies Sparks Trouble

Sports Cabinet Secretary Hassan Wario has dared gaming companies in Kenya to cut off funding in sports after they went up in arms over a 50 percent tax imposed on them in the 2017/2018 national budget.

CS Wario’s comments drew sharp reactions from Kenyans on social media who argued that the move was retrogressive and punitive to the industry.

They argued that while there have been calls for the regulation of the gaming industry, the firms have done a lot for the country through several Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) projects that have in so many ways uplifted the standards of sports in the country.

A source privy to the remarks by the Sports CS disclosed that Wario had for long wanted to reign in on the gaming firms.

“This is witch hunt from the Minister who wants to sabotage these companies so that they can shut down while the minister himself has proven to be very incompetent,” the source divulged.

CS Wario has been on the receiving end over claims that he presided over the corruption scandal that rocked Team Kenya in the 2016 Rio de Janeiro Olympics.

In January this year, the Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP) recommended the prosecution of Wario over his mismanagement of Team Kenya during the Rio Games.

The CS was blamed for allowing joyriders to the Rio Olympics, theft of athletes uniforms, inaccurate accreditation and fraud in ticketing.

Earlier on, Members of Parliament (MP) had tabled a motion for the removal of Wario from office.

"Under his watch, he [Wario] has allowed corrupt practices by NOCK and multi-sectoral parties running sports. It is incompetency surmounting to gross misconduct and unethical," Homa Bay Town MP Peter Kaluma said at the time.

The Directorate of Criminal Investigations (DCI) would later grill the cabinet secretary over complaints that he was mishandling the sports docket.

Meanwhile, pressure continues to mount on Wario to resign, with the latest concern being that he is trying to frustrate firms like SportPesa that have sponsored various sports in the country such as the Kenya Premier League, enhanced talent promotion and promoted sports infrastructure.