NAIROBI, Nov. 23 (Xinhua) -- Kenya will put in more money towards sportsmen and women with disabilities who represent the country at international events in order to improve performance, a government official said on Friday.
Josephta Mukobe, principal secretary for heritage in the ministry of sports, culture and arts, said the sufferings that the sportspeople have undergone will be a thing of the past and they should instead brace themselves for an improved future.
"There is always a new beginning. There is nothing we can do about the past except to learn from it with the view of doing things differently in future," Mukobe said during a panel discussion at Kenya International Sports Film Festival in Nairobi.
Sports people with disability in Kenya have in the past complained of being discriminated against and that they have to fight hard before they are accorded what is rightfully theirs, unlike their able-bodied counterparts for whom everything is usually smooth-sailing.
The most recent case is the national amputee football team that represented the country during this year's Amputee Football World Cup held in Mexico that endured harrowing experiences before, during and after the championships, which elicited an outcry from a section of Kenyans.
The team traveled to the Latin American nation without official playing kit, allowances and insurance cover and upon return, they staged a sleep-over at the ministry of sports headquarters demanding their stipend.
It took the intervention of the senate committee that oversees matters pertaining to sports for members of the team to be paid their allowances.
Mukobe said the disadvantaged athletes will receive the same treatment and privileges as their normal colleagues.
"We will open training facilities for them, pay them emoluments while in residential camps and offer them all the comfort necessary for them to register good results during global competitions.