Veteran Sports Editor James Waindi vows to work closely with all sports federations and recruit more sports scribes as he is elected new SJAK president

Veteran journalist James Waindi is the new Sports Journalists Association of Kenya (SJAK) president.

The People Daily Sports Editor amassed 37 votes to beat incumbent Chris Mbaisi of the Star Newspaper who garnered 26 in a tight election held on Saturday at Nyayo National Stadium in Nairobi.

“I’m wishing the new SJAK president well. He is my personal friend and we are going to work closely to ensure the association progresses well without any hitch,” Mbaisi said after the elections.

Waindi said: “I take this opportunity to thank the outgoing office led by Mbaisi for doing a splendid job during their tenure and setting the ball rolling, now we want to take it to the next level.”

He added: “We are going to work closely with all the sports federations, Media Council of Kenya and the Kenya Union of Journalists. We will also embark on a serious recruitment drive to increase the number of SJAK members across the country and make the association bigger.”

Media Council of Kenya’s Program Manager and Trainer Victor Bwire who attended the polls as an observer described the process as very mature and democratic.

Eric Njiru of Homeboyz Radio had 34 votes against James Magayi of Pulse Media in the race for the Vice President post.

Mukami Wambora, a freelancer, edged Alex Isaboke of Capital FM by 35 votes to 28 to bag the Treasurer position.

Samson Ateka of the Star Newspaper won the Organising Secretary post unopposed while Agnes Makhandia of Nation Media (48 votes), Beki Mwamburi of  Citizen Radio (36), Ahmed Abulla of K24 (40) and Charity Wanja, a freelancer, (27) were the four Executive Committee members elected.

The new officials will decide the way forward on the position of the Secretary General after seat-holder Mike Okinyi of Citizen TV opted out of the race.

Moses Wakhisi of KTN was locked out of the post on technicalities.

Those elected will be in office for four years.

“I’m grateful to those who voted to give me the mandate to lead this noble association.

“Let’s now join hands and make this association great again,” Waindi underlined in his acceptance speech.

“Constitution change and the journalists welfare will be top key in our  next agenda.

“We will strive to bring more sponsors on board.

“We will also hold investment training for the members.

“I’m also pledging that the election for the vacant Secretary General post will  be held the soonest,” he added.

Mbaisi thanked the scribes for showing decorum in the highly contested elections saying: “You made your decisions, it’s not a bed of roses leading this association, but I’ll be  open to talks and consultations for advices that may take this organisation to the next level.”

Kenya National Sports Council Administrative Secretary James Akama and Treasurer Charles Nyaberi who oversaw the elections hailed the exercise for being peaceful even though they recommended voters education ahead of future elections to avert the number of spoilt votes realised in the exercise.

“These elections were in line with international sports body AIPS.

“As members of various federations, SJAK is very important to us because the sports journalists help to market our associations, we owe a lot of gratitude to SJAK,” Nyaberi stated.

“To the new office, go beyond the bar that was set by the outgoing office, we have confidence in you that you will deliver,” added Nyaberi.

MG Team

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