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CAF disqualifies Zimbabwe, Kenya from AFCON 2023 Qualifiers

The Confederation of African Football (CAF) has officially disqualified Zimbabwe and Kenya from participating in the upcoming Africa Cup of Nations 2023 qualifiers.

This was confirmed in a statement issued by CAF on Monday.

The disqualification comes after the two nation’s football federations ZIFA and FKF failed to comply with conditions put in place by FIFA after both countries were suspended from all international football activities for “third party interference”.

The suspension was announced in February, however, last month the two nations were included in the AFCON qualifying draw.

But in order to participate, CAF instructed the two countries to put their houses in order exactly two weeks before the first match day qualifier game set for next month.

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To lift the ban, FIFA ordered Zimbabwe to reinstate the Felton Kamambo led board which was suspended by the SRC while Kenya were also instructed to reinstate the suspended FKF board.

Nonetheless, both Zimbabwe and Kenya seem to have firmly decided to embrace the suspension and they won’t play the qualifiers for the much coveted continental football showpiece to be held next year in Cote d’Ivoire from 23 June to 23 July.

And following the two country’s decision, in a statement, CAF has officially booted them out of the TotalEnergies Africa Cup of Nations Cote d’Ivoire 2023 qualifiers.

“As a consequence of having failed to have their suspensions by FIFA set aside, CAF has confirmed that both Kenya and Zimbabwe will not participate in the TotalEnergies Africa Cup of Nations Cote d’Ivoire 2023 qualifiers.

“The qualifiers will kick-off on the first day of June 2022,” reads part of the statement.

“CAF had included them in the official draw earlier in April 2022 on condition that the suspension must be lifted two weeks before their first match day.

“Kenya and Zimbabwe, suspended for political interference, have not yet met the criteria required by the FIFA Congress as a prerequisite for lifting their suspension.”

In addition, CAF also indicated, “As a result: Because of the suspension, the following will apply:

-The two associations; Football Kenya Federation (FKF) and the Zimbabwe Football Association (ZIFA) will be considered losers and eliminated from the competition.

-Groups C and K will be composed only of three teams and the order of the matches will be maintained in accordance with the match schedule that has been communicated to the teams after the draw.

– The first and runner-up teams of those groups will qualify to the finals.”