Former Kenyan international Paul Bitok will vie for the Kenya Volleyball Federation (KVF) presidency in the early 2018 national elections.
KVF is set for national polls early 2018 as Volleyball prepares to welcome a new face should current President Waithaka Kioni fail to recapture the seat. Bitok, who currently coaches the Rwanda national team, will have his name on the ballot according to close confidants.
“He will come to vie for KVF presidency,” a source close to the celebrated coach told FourFourTwoMedia.com.
“His contract with Rwanda ends next year (2017) and he might not renew it. He wants to come and help save our game. He’s consulting widely on the next move,” added our source.
11 years in the national team
Bitok has been avoiding local volleyball politics despite calls by stakeholders for him to join the federation he last served in 2010 during the World Cup in Japan where he served as the head coach. He featured for the national team for 11 years (1993-2004) with his best performance being a fourth-place finish at the 1999 All Africa Games held in Johannesburg, South Africa.
Bitok is being fronted by a group who want to see changes including promotion of men’s volleyball at the federation.
Last month, former KVF Secretary General and national team player Dan Wanyama challenged players to go for elective posts and Bitok seems to have heed the call of the current Webuye West legislature.
Bitok, 42, was the first professional male Volleyball player from Kenya and opened doors for the current crop of Kenya professionals like Philip Maiyo who plays in Doha, Qatar and Mike Chemos, based in Finland. He played for Tunisia’s Rades Sportive du Saher between 1997-2000 before moving to Croatian side, Zagreb Club from 2000 to late 2003.
Locally, Bitok played for the defunct Posta club before going to coach the women’s side. He thereafter left for Rwanda where he has managed to improve the standards of volleyball, surpassing Kenya in volleyball development.
Old versus young
Bitok is known for taking risks and having open ears for improvement, something that is eminent in his coaching career which emphasizes on young talent development.
Former national captain, Maiyo, vied for KVF Vice Presidency in the last elections but lost to Kipkemei Sirma. He is also expected to challenge for the seat in the coming election.
Ulinzi Stars and national team setter Elisha Aliwa is also understood to be salivating for the seat while Geoffrey Omondi, Cooperative Bank’s head coach, is fronted for the position of secretary general in polls that will pit the old versus a new line up of fresh blood.
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