By Ibrahim Bangura a.k.a. Tanko
In an exclusive interview with NewsWatch sports, the Public Relations Officer of the Sierra Leone Football Association(SLFA), Ibrahim B. Kamara has said that the SLFA President, Madame Isha Johansen did not reject the sum of Seven Hundred and Fifty Million Leone’s (Le. 750,000,000) from the Government of Sierra Leone to support the FA Cup but asked that the right process must be followed, adding that the SLFA administration expressed its disappointment over the fact that the statement by the SLFA President was highly misrepresented and clearly taken out of context by many.
The meeting during which the said government funding was discussed was well attended at the Sports Ministry by almost all the SLFA Executive Committee Members including the Vice President 2, Mr Alie Commoner Kargbo and a few Heads of Departments at the FA.
“At no time did the SLFA President “reject” the allocated amount” the Minister affirmed
The Minister of Sports confirmed that money had been approved during Madam Johansen’s court trial but he “was not prepared to hand it over to the Brima Mazola Kamara led acting SLFA leadership“.
He further said that Madam Johansen held a closed door meeting on the same day with her Executive Members present at the said meeting as to how best to form a collective steering committee between the Sports Ministry and the Football Association to run the FA Cup, where payments from the government funds will be made by officials of the Sports Ministry as they normally do when it comes to international matches.
The President of the SLFA, Madam Isha Johanssen, thanked the Minister but admonished that ”for the sake of transparency and to avoid third party political interference” it would be best that the funds are not deposited into the SLFA accounts.
In her statement, she said she will continue to work closely with the Ministry of Sports and would like to urge journalists and reporters to seek clarification before putting out statements which have the potential of misrepresenting the facts. “The door of the Association is open to the public for information at all time,’ she confirmed.
However, football lovers are presently asking when the FC Cup tournament will commence due to the long standoff in the football and the impasse between t