Why Sierra Leoneans Should Speak Out Against The Lawlessness Against Women.

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Saikujohn Barrie

I have gone through the ruling of the Sierra Leone Women’s Premier League Board on the attack of the Referees during the match between FC Kallon and Mogbwemo Queens FC on the 9th February, 2024 at MK Field, Freetown.

I welcome the swiftness of the investigations and subsequent decision thereafter, even though I was made to understand that the Board didn’t speak to the victim or victims.

On that note, I am still wondering as to why the board didn’t speak to the victim and how can the investigations be thorough without getting first-hand information from the victim/s.

Did the victims refuse to speak to the board or the other way round?

I think concluding the investigations without speaking to the victim creates doubt in the minds of rational human beings, but I will not duel much on that.

In the board’s ruling it is stated that “The Match Commissioner’s Report is very clear in that the officials of FC Kallon used motherly invectives during the match aforesaid.”

The report further stated, “The videos and pictures further corroborate the fact that the aforementioned events took place. It is also clear that the referees were assaulted by the individuals in the videos and the pictures. These individuals are supporters and Officials of FC Kallon.”

Given the above, it is clearly clear that the use of motherly invectives by officials of FC Kallon had served as an incitement that emboldened those who took part in the attack against the female referees.

Had the FC Kallon officials not used motherly invectives, their fans /supporters might not have done the same and they might not have even gone further to throw stones at the referees and invade the pitch when Marie Koroma sounded the final whistle of the match which resulted to them being beaten up and threw objects, like stones and dust, at them.

Let me state herein that according to the findings of the Sierra Leone Women’s Premier League Board, there was a clear criminal conducts exhibited by the FC officials and their cohorts with an apparent intent to inflict grievous bodily harm and psychological harm on the female referees.

From the aforementioned, I think the Sierra Leone Police which has been investigating the matter needs to take this matter very seriously by making arrests of the suspects especially those who were seen and identified in the videos and those named on the Sierra Leone Women’s Premier League Board report so as they help the police with investigations.

I have also seen actions taken against certain persons wherein the report states, “Given the above, we make the following orders: The individuals, in the persons of Mr. Alhaji Mansaray – Safety and Security Coordinator FC Kallon, Mr. Leornard Augiden – Welfare Officer FC Kallon, and Mr. Abdul Hindolo Karim – FC Kallon are hereby banned from taking part in all future matches and from attending them in the area immediately surrounding the fields of play and from all activities relating to the Women’s Premier League Board for six (6) months from the date of this order.
Further to order (1) supra, the individuals, in the persons of Mr. Alhaji Mansaray – Safety and Security Coordinator FC Kallon, Mr. Leornard Augiden – Welfare Officer FC Kallon, and Mr. Abdul Hindolo Karim – FC Kallon shall pay a fine for Le 5,000.00 (Five Thousand Leones) severally under Rule 35.1(b) of the Women’s Premier League Rules and Regulations.”

In as much as these actions were taken in fulfillment of the Women’s Premier League Rules and Regulations which were designed to address conduct in and around the football pitch, I believe the Police should follow the evidence of assaults and grievous bodily harm against the female referees and charge anyone who was involved in attacking the women referees.

As someone who has experienced and felt the pain of violence and lawlessness against women, I think it is high time the institutions and groups charged with the responsibility to defend women and all Sierra Leoneans, in general, stood up firm against this misconduct.

The wickedness against our women is getting out of hands therefore all Sierra Leoneans with conscience need to stand up against this.

Today, you people in a position to take effective action against this lawlessness against women in our societies, yet you ignore or fail to act as if nothing wrong is happening, you or your relatives may be victims of brutal violence one day.

It is on this note I will leave you with the German theologian, Martin Niemoller who was an anti-Semite and an admirer of Hitler but as Nazism took hold in Germany, he saw Nazism for what it was: it was not just the Jews Hitler sought to extirpate, it was just about anyone with an alternate point of view.

Niemoller spoke out, and for his trouble was incarcerated in the Sachsenhausen and Dachau concentration camps from 1937 to 1945, and very nearly executed.

While incarcerated, Niemoller wrote a poem that:
First, they came for the Jews, and I did not speak out because I was not a Jew.

Then they came for the Communists, and I did not speak out because I was not a Communist.
Then they came for the trade unionists, and I did not speak out because I was not a trade unionist.
Then they came for me and there was no one left to speak out for me.

From the above poem, one will realize that people should speak against wickedness and evil in society.

Therefore, implore all and sundry to stand up in support of the female referees to get the justice they deserve.

I don’t care whether they were attacked because of their gender or actions while doing their job because perpetrators always have reasons to bout our women.
I rest my case

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