Persistent Soccer Pitch Unrest and Its Implications on Security in Nairobi City County, Kenya
Wanjala, Maelo Frederick
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This study sought to investigate and to document the causes of football violence in the Kenya soccer fields. The specific objectives were: to examine the circumstances under which football violence typically occurs in Kenya’s stadia, to identify some of the factors that correlate to violence during match and post-match violence, to review the existing policy framework that governs football in Kenya. The study utilized Frustration -Aggression theory. The study adopted a descriptive survey design. The target population comprised of 320 respondents drawn from officials in football management, club officials, football fans and police officers. The study sampled 246 respondents from the target population using purposive and simple random sampling. Quantitative Primary data was gathered using questionnaires. Interview schedule was used to collect qualitative primary data from senior managers of sports management, police officers and club’s management. Qualitative data was analysed using the thematic method, data reduction and classification of information. Quantitative data was analysed using descriptive statistics using Statistical Package of Social Sciences. Cross-tabulation was used to test the relationship between the study variables. The analysed data is presented in tables and charts to represent quantitative findings. Qualitative findings were presented in narratives, verbatim reporting, discussions and inferences. The study findings are summarised and conclusion made in an attempt to describe the research objectives. Regarding circumstances under which football violence typically occurs, the study found outthat football fans aggression, police action, rude or abusive fans and uncoordinated football match management are circumstances that breeds football violence. On the factors that correlate to violence during match and post-match violence, the study revealed that alcoholism before and after the match, the number of policemen/security officers are not normally enough during matches and also that stadium design and lack of constant monitoring of crowd density by the police and stewards are factors that correlate to violence during match and post-match violence.On the existing policy framework on football violence in Kenya, the study revealed that, to a moderateextent, the following policy frameworks are satisfied: security provision by host clubs, structured complaints and disciplinary mechanism and also safety precautions by regulating government agencies. Thus, the study therefore recommends that the government through its Ministry of Sports should consider setting up policies prohibiting drunkenness in the stadiums while the matches are ongoing and also should hire qualified contractors to derive a quality stadium design. Also, the study recommends that the Ministry of Interior Coordination should deploy adequate police officers to stadia while there are matches going on. Also, the study recommends that the clubs management should deploy adequate stewards to the stadia to control the fans.The management of the football clubs should create schedules that support coordinated football matches to discourage uncoordinated football match management. The policy makers in sports sector should pass regulations,these regulations should include the procedure of crowd handling where fans are segregated, the sale of ticketing to be done away from the venue before the match day, referees and match officials to be train in proper match handling and officiating.