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FORMER SPORTS CS HASSAN WARIO AND KIPCHOGE KEINO GIVEN UNTIL THURSDAY TO SURRENDER

Former CS Sports, culture & Arts Hassan Wario

Former Sports Cabinet Secretary Hassan Wario and veteran athlete Kipchoge Keino have been given until Thursday to surrender to police over the 2016 Olympic Games financial scandal.

The two were among four officials who have been charged with misappropriation of funds during the Rio Olympics in Brazil.

Wario, who is now Kenya’s ambassador to Austria, is not in the country and Kipchoge Keino, who is the former chairman of the National Olympic Committee of Kenya (Nock),  is also out of the country.

Their lawyers have however said that the two are ready to comply with the court orders.

Former Sports PS Richard Ekai and former Nock officials Stephen Soi and Francis Kinyili appeared before the Anti-Corruption Court, Milimani, Nairobi on Monday where they pleaded not guilty to the graft charges and were freed on a cash bail of Sh1m each.

Ekai was appointed as Kenya’s ambassador to Russia and was to travel to the country but the court ordered him and the other suspects to deposit their passports.

Wario and Kipchoge have until Thursday 6 am to surrender to the Directorate of Criminal Investigations upon which they will appear in court on Friday to plead to charges of abuse of office over the Rio scandal.

They are charged with the misappropriation of Sh 55 million during the 2016 Rio Olympic Games, which resulted in one of the most scandalous international outings in Kenya’s athletics industry.

A tribunal formed to investigate the Rio scandal found that top officials in the Sports ministry had embezzled Sh88 million meant for air tickets to the games and recommended the prosecution of those found culpable.

Some of the misdemeanors exposed by the tribunal include a ticketing deal the ministry struck with a local travel agency to provide air tickets at a much higher price than what the national carrier, Kenya Airways, had offered.

“While the National Olympics Committee of Kenya (Nock) had negotiated for a Sh175,000 bill per economy class return ticket to Rio, the travel company had increased the rate to Sh445,381. Business class rates were quoted at Sh800,000 but the agency charged Sh2,028,385 per ticket,” the committee observed.

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