FIFA, led by Gianni Infantino, pictured, has suspended the national football federations of Kenya and Zimbabwe following Government interference in their affairs ©Getty Images

FIFA has suspended the National Football Federations of Zimbabwe and Kenya from any participation in the sport following Government interference into their affairs.

The ban means Zimbabwe and Kenya cannot compete in age-restricted or international club competitions.

Local clubs will also be prohibited from participating in continental interclub competitions.

FIFA President Gianni Infantino said this was "without prejudice to any investigations by national authorities or other judicial bodies."

He added: "They [the Governments] know what needs to be done for them to be re-admitted or for the suspensions to be lifted."

This was an indication that Kenya must reinstate the Football Kenya Federation (FKF) and disband the current Caretaker Committee headed by former judge Aaron Ringera.

Amina Mohamed, the cabinet secretary for sports heritage and culture of Kenya dissolved the FKF, led by Nick Mwendwa, in November for an alleged mismanagement of funds.

Mwendwa was originally arrested on corruption charges but these were later dropped in December.

 Nick Mwendwa was forced to step down from his position as head of the FKF ©Getty Images
Nick Mwendwa was forced to step down from his position as head of the FKF ©Getty Images

The Caretaker Committee was organised to have a lifespan of six months, whilst a Secretariat was created to help the body function in the meantime.

FIFA criticised the Kenyan Government and rejected the Caretaker Committee’s right to govern Kenyan football.

During the same month, the Zimbabwe Football Associations Board was suspended by the Zimbabwe Sports and Recreation Commission for alleged misuse of public funds and reported sexual abuse of female match officials.

This latest blow to Zimbabwean football follows the Confederation of African Football banning the nation’s main venue, the National Sports Stadium, for not being fit for purpose.

The decision by the FIFA Council highlights that the world governing body remains unapologetic when Governments involve themselves in footballing affairs.

Article 17 of the FIFA regulations specifies: "Each member shall manage its affairs independently and with no influence from third parties."

Meanwhile, Infantino condemned the Russian invasion of Ukraine and said there has been no decision made on the World Cup qualifiers due to be held in Russia.