The Liberia National Handball Association (LNHA) has accused the Arbitration Committee of the Liberia National Olympic Committee (LNOC) of being responsible for the Association’s denial to participate in the recent handball tournament in Niamey, Niger.
In a letter sent to the committee, with copies also sent to the Ministry of Youth & Sports, all federations and the president of the LNOC Mr. Philipbert Browne, the LNHA said the headquarters of the International Handball Federation and its continental counterpart awaited clarification from the NOC as to whether players, referees and coaches who recently complained about disagreement in the association were actually LNHA’s executive committee members.
The LNHA said the clarification was necessary for the international body to have sent USD42,500 for two Liberian teams — the junior and the youth — to have participated in the IHF Africa Zone lll Championship Tournament, which was held from April 8-14.
The LNHA said up to April 7, 2018, the LNOC Arbitration Committee has failed to submit its report and the failure to provide the clarification undermined the two teams’ chance to have traveled to Niamey for the championships.
The letter, signed by LNHA’s president Mason Saweler, said because the participation of the two teams was necessary, “That was the major reason we responded to the Committee’s letter by providing clarity to have enabled you to inform CAHB accordingly so as to allow our teams travel to Niamey, Niger, to participate in the competition.
“And upon our return to Monrovia your investigation would have been conducted, but you deliberately refused and Liberia was not represented, and we write you also to let you know that your decision has caused a serious setback to the improvement of handball in Liberia.
“And this was just because you wanted to satisfy few individuals, you damaged the image of our country internationally and wasted the efforts of students recruited from several schools that trained for more than two months.”
The LNHA said, “We understand that the Arbitration Committee of the LNOC comprised of 5 members but to our surprise, only 3 persons started the hearing and later one of the members left. However, our international partners, the Liberian people and our association are awaiting the findings from your office.”
The LNHA letter was addressed to the chairman of the LNOC’s Arbitration Committee, Cllr. Sylvester Rennie. The LNHA earlier told the committee that the hearing, which was conducted on Saturday, April 7, grew out of a complaint from some aggrieved coaches, referees, and players who unconstitutionally claimed themselves as being “executive committee members” of the Liberia National Handball Association since 2015.