Over forty-two legitimate football members of the Sierra Leone Football Association (SLFA) on Wednesday 9th December, 2015 staged a one-day peaceful demonstration at the SLFA Football Academy Kingtom, Freetown.
Legitimate Football members across the fourteen districts in Sierra Leone made their way to Freetown to demonstrate over what they says is their right to demonstrate because for the past three years football has not been played in the country.
According to the Western Area Football Association (WAFA) Chairman, Abdul Amid Kanaciao one of the protesters said the reason for the one-day demonstration at the football academy is that the legitimate football members are fed-up with the leadership of the current SLFA Executive led by Isha Johansen as there is no development in the game instead there is just infighting among the football family.
The WAFA Chairman said since Isha Johansen came into the football family there has been no football development or unity and that the entire family is seriously divided which is taking the country’s football backward.
He said today’s demonstration is to draw the attention of FIFA, CAF and the current APC government to the fact that the legitimate football members are in high gear to take over the SLFA and the leadership of Isha Johansen which has failed the people of this country and that they cannot sit and watch football destroyed in the county.
He said their main motive as football stakeholders is to take over the SLFA and develop the game across the county which many Sierra Leoneans want to see happen.
He told this press that they will not relent in their cause because they are not fighting themselves but fighting for the interest of the players and the general public which is their legitimate right.
“President Ernest Bai Koroma, FIFA and CAF have intervened into the football infighting and set up a seven man committee that would identify the legitimate football members and take them to Congress but the Isha Johansen executive decided to dissolve the committee which is not their mandate,” said Kanacio.
The Inspector General of Police, Alieu Francis Munu, during the demonstration sealed the office of the Sierra Leone Football Association (SLFA) at Kingtom, Freetown.
The demonstrators stated that since President Ernest Bai Koroma had advised the association not to go to election it was on that grounds that the seven-man working group was supposed to have been meeting with SLAF executive but they boycotted the meeting and certain of them went against the advice and went on to organize an election which did not have the blessing of the Ministry of Sports, FIFA, CAF and the government.
In was on this score, according to reliable sources, that he decided to seal the office as they have shown no respect for the Ministry of Sports and President Koroma.
The sources also revealed that the seven-man committee will put out an official statement against those who are behind the defiance in the Isha Johansen executive to organize the so-called election in the Southern and Eastern regions.