A post-Olympics probe into Team Kenya is confirming fears of corruption

Eluid Kipchoge won one of Kenya’s six gold medals in Rio.
Eluid Kipchoge won one of Kenya’s six gold medals in Rio.
Image: Reuters/Athit Perawongmetha
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A probe into Team Kenya’s participation in the 2016 Rio Olympics is turning up dirt on the team’s Olympic officials. Stephen Arap Soi, the team leader, has been charged with stealing around $250,000, meant for the accommodation of Kenyan officials in Brazil. A parliamentary hearing also found that the sports ministry had covered the costs of flight tickets for Soi’s wife to the Olympics.

Kenya’s medal haul—its best ever—is being overshadowed by its multiple scandals. In addition to corruption claims, two of Team Kenya’s coaches were sent home after being involved in a doping scandal, and Nike, the team’s kit supplier, complained some kit did not reach athletes. Two officials have been charged with stealing Nike kit, while charges have been dropped against another official, Fridah Shiroya, who is expected to testify for the state when the case is heard on Oct. 24.

After the Games, Uhuru Kenyatta, Kenya’s president, requested an investigation, and said in a statement that ”every Kenyan must take their responsibilities seriously and be ready to face the consequences of their actions.” While similar scandals rocked Kenya’s 2012 Olympics outing in London, this time the country appears more intent on doing something. Four days after the Games ended, the government disbanded Kenya’s Olympic committee.