Sierra Leone referee in US$ 500 bribery scandal 


September 7, 2018

By Sahr Morris Jnr

Sierra Leonean referee, Billy Konneh

Sierra Leonean referee, Billy Konneh, has been named amongst 20 other referees in Africa to have engaged in corruption and bribery in world football in the latest videos released by undercover journalists, Tiger eye PI and Anas Aremeyaw Anas.

The recent video is part of Tiger Eye PIs mantra of naming, shaming and jailing of corrupt people in society and the latest video named Number12 which is going public for the first time has already been made available to the Confederation of African Football (CAF) and individual countries Football Associations including the Sierra Leone Football Association (SLFA).

“Sierra Leone: FIFA and CAF certified Sierra Leonean referee, Billy Konneh took $ 500 from fake football agents to officiate in favour of their team in the 2017 West African Football Union (WAFU) tournament,” the video report stated.

Referee Konneh is the only Sierra Leonean referee to have been named so far in the Anas undercover report which has exposed over 30 referees in Africa.  Already, 22 others are either facing a life ban or a lengthy ban from the African Football governing body, CAF.

Like other referees caught in this secret investigation, referee Konneh could also face the same punishment from CAF, and according to sources from the SLFA, they are yet to hear from CAF but admitted that the match officials are already provisionally suspended a few months back pending further investigations.

The SLFA source said: “With the video evidence, I think CAF will take action. This sad for Africa Football to say the least and one of these match officials from Madagascar was in charge of Cote d’Ivoire and Sierra Leone match in 2017 in Bouake. He was one of those that prevented us from qualifying with the manner they handled that qualifier.”

Liberia referee Jerry Yekeh was also reported to have collected $500 from fake football agents to officiate in favour of their team in the same WAFU tournament. Yekeh has provisionally been banned by CAF and the Liberian Football Referees Association pending investigations.

On July 7th 2018, the Disciplinary Board of Confédération African de Football suspended 11 referees caught on tape taking bribes in the same documentary.