Guinean Govt. Concerned about Discriminatory Act Against its Player in Liberia

(L-r) Determine Girls President, Grace Weah, player Bountou Sylla and Guinean Ambassador to Liberia Ethadi Abdoulaye.

The Guinean government, through its Embassy near Monrovia, on Monday expressed concern about the discrimenation act meted upon one of its citizens playing in the Liberian women’s division league.

Bountou Sylla, a striker for newly crowned champions, Determine Girls, was earlier denied from wearing her flag for the medal presentation and eventually prevented from carrying the flag for her team’s trophy celebration by the Liberia Football Association’s Deputy Secretary General for legal and Technical Affairs, Benedict Yarsiah; an allegation he has since denied.

The Guinean Embassy on Monday invited player Bountou Sylla and her club’s president, Grace Weah for hearing following Saturday’s incident.

According to the Guinean Ambassador accredited to Liberia, Ethadi Abdoulaye, he was instructed to gather facts about the incident following media reports.

Ambassador Abdoulaye, according to the club, was briefed about the steps that have been taken by the LFA, including the opening of an investigation that the Ambassador said they are closely awaiting the outcome.

The LFA, through its president Mustapha Raji, had earlier apologized and took full responsibility for one of his staff’s actions.

“In our society, there is no place for discrimination. Everyone has the freedom to exercise their rights. The LFA is open to all players around the world with interest in playing football in Liberia. 

“We want to take full responsibility for the wrong action taken by one of our staff at the SKD practice pitch during the closing ceremony involving the crowning of Determine Girls as the Women’s football champions. We want to extend our sincere apologies to player Bountou Sylla, the higher goal scorer of our women’s league division, the football club Determine Girls and fans; Guinean Football Federation, all Guineans, sport loving Liberians for what happened yesterday, we’re very sorry and we regret the situation. 

“The Football Association likes to also assure our football loving families that the LFA will continue the investigation and take the appropriate action. So far, we have communicated to the Guinean Football Federation, we extended our apologies to the federation and we’ve also communicated with player Bountou Sylla and apologized for the situation that took place,” Mr Raji said.

Meanwhile, the LFA late Monday announced the suspension of its Deputy Secretary General for Legal Affairs, Atty. Benedict Yarsiah, for “time indefinite” pending investigation into Saturday’s incident.

“The LFA finds the action unethical and has also asked Atty. Yarsiah to refrain from all activities relating to football,” a release from the football association said.