KGU okays golf resumption

KGU okays golf resumption

Mumias-based professional golfer, Dismas Indiza (left) takes Flavia Othim, Kenya Breweries Limited Head of Spirits, through the basics of golf during the official announcement of KBL's sponsorship for the 2021 Magical Kenya Open on March 12, 2021. 

Photo credit: Pool

Golfing activities in the country which had been suspended last month because of the third wave of the Covid-19, pandemic will resume on Sunday, the Kenya Golf Union (KGU) has said.

In a press statement issued by KGU chairman Ben Omuodo late Saturday evening and sent to all the member golf clubs in the country, he however said that clubs will not in the the meantime be allowed to organise competitions until the union receives further guidance from the Ministries of Health and Sports.

“Following H.E. Uhuru Kenyatta address to the Nation earlier today and more specifically, his direction that all sporting activities resume as guided by the regulations issued by the Ministry of Health jointly with the Ministry of Sports, we are glad to let you know that golfing activities may resume from tomorrow, May 2, 2021. It is imperative to note that the Covid19 pandemic is still with us and that all golf clubs must play their role in protecting its golfers," read the statement.

"As we await the detailed protocols from the Ministry of Health and the Ministry of Sports, we would like to direct that all clubs must not hold any organised competitions. We would further like to direct that all clubs adopt the following measures to help stop the spread of the virus: 1. No caddies: golfers will be expected to play without caddies until further notice 2. Wearing of masks: golfers will be required to wear masks at all times," said Omuodo.

He also said golfers will also be required to carry their own hand sanitisers in their golf bags, while avoid gathering at the practice range or practice putting greens, identify how many golfers can safely use these facilities and ensuring the limit is observed.

Omuodo asked clubs to also provide sanitisers for golfers using these areas and that clubs should organise a system of booking and allocation of tee times to ensure that golfers don’t gather around the tee.

“The maximum number of golfers in a group per tee time should not exceed four and there is to be a minimum of 10-minute intervals between tee times. Records of the golfers should be kept at the club for ease of follow. Clubs should place notices on tees reminding golfers to keep two meters apart on the teeing areas as well as throughout the round’" Omuodo.

"The starters should also repeat the message to all golfers. Where possible, there should be visible signs on the ground (especially around tee boxes) indicating where golfers should stand and at the same time golf courses will have to put notices telling golfers not to touch the flagsticks.

They shall also insert the hole liners in such a way that the ball that is holed is not far below the surface of the putting green, and that there shall not be any rakes in the bunkers and golfers will be required to smoothen the bunkers using their feet or golf clubs’’

"All golfers will be expected to comply with all other Ministry of Health protocols as advised from time to time. Any golfer who is found not to comply and thereby bringing the game of golf to disrepute, will face disciplinary action in accordance with the Union guidelines.

The Board of Directors of each Member Club will bear total responsibility for lack of compliance at their respective clubs," Omuodo concluded in the statement which was also copied to Sports Cabinet Secretary, Amina Mohamed and the ministry’s Principal Secretary, Joe Okudo.