Fifa lifts its ban on Kenya soccer

NAIROBI - Fifa lifted its five-month suspension on the Kenya Football Federation (KFF) on Friday after securing a promise that the government would not interfere in the running of the sport in the east African country.

Fifa, world soccer's governing body, said it had also been assured that earlier agreements with the KFF, including a 28-point accord signed in Cairo in January, would be respected by the government.

"A Fifa delegation will visit Nairobi from March 14 to 16 with a view to implementing a road map for the immediate relaunch of Kenyan football," Fifa said.

It also said a crisis committee set up to run soccer by Kenya's government after the ban would be immediately dissolved.

Fifa banned Kenya from international competition on October 24 for failing to respect signed agreements and recurring problems in the national federation. The government responded by dissolving the KFF.

Kenyan soccer has been in crisis for months with two rival domestic leagues competing at the same time, among other problems.

Fifa said it hoped to tackle a series of issues during next week's visit to Kenya - including introducing a transparent financial management system and reducing the number of participating teams to 18.

Kenya is now free to assume its programme in the Africa Cup of Nations qualifying competition and is due to meet Swaziland in Nairobi on March 24. - Reuters