26 former employees of the WRC Safari Rally Kenya Secretariat are demanding more than Sh30 million from the Sports Ministry after they were summarily dismissed in January 2024.

In a statement shared with Swala Nyeti, the former WRC Safari Rally Secretariat employees claimed the ministry had refused to remit their salaries, pending allowances, and gratuity.

The disgruntled former staff members said their jobs ended vide a gazette notice by Sports CS Ababu Namwamba alerting them their role would formally terminate on January 4, 2024.

“Despite numerous appeals and requests for the ministry to pay the salaries, pending allowances, and gratuity owed to the staff, all efforts seem to have been in vain,” they lamented in the statement.

They added: “The individuals who have served tirelessly in organizing and executing the rally from 2019 to 2023 have been left in a distressing situation due to the ministry's apparent disregard for their well- being.”

They claim the secretariat was reconstituted by Namwamba and their roles taken over by a new team minus any formal communication on their fate and reasons for their termination.

“According to the employment act section 45(2), an employer is expected to provide valid reasons for termination, otherwise it will be termed as unfair termination. Section 35 states that every employee has the right to be given a Termination notice while Section 36 states that every employee has a right to be given payment in lieu of notice,” said the statement.

The former organisers of the WRC Safari Rally in Kenya now say they are facing financial constraints and mental anguish saying the CS and ministry remain mum on the matter.

“This blatant disregard for the welfare of the hardworking staff has not only caused financial strain but has also inflicted mental anguish on the former employees who were fired without notice,” they claimed.

They are now urging President William Ruto to intervene in the matter and also recognise the key role they played in organizing the Safari Rally after it resumed in Kenya in 2021.

“It is imperative that the Ministry of Sports recognises the sacrifices and dedication of the former WRC Safari Rally staff and acts swiftly to address this grievous injustice,” they concluded.


But in a quick rejoinder, the Ministry of Youth Affairs, Creative Economy and Sports has denied the allegations that it has refused to pay the former staff their terminal dues.

Speaking to Swala Nyeti, Pauline Sheghu, the Communications Director in the Office of the CS, said the ministry is still conducting an evaluation on the claims before filing a report.

According to Sheghu, the evaluation process will establish the veracity of the claims and the justification for the payments saying Namwamba is also keen on seeing the matter resolved.

She revealed that the ministry also applied for more funds in the supplementary budget before Parliament to settle all pending bills, including cash due to the said rally employees.

The Ministry added that the matter delayed as it was focused all its efforts on ensuring the success of the 2024 WRC Safari Rally in Naivasha, Nakuru County, over the Easter Weekend.