The President of the Sierra Leone Football Association (SLFA) Isha Johansen, who has been charged with abuse of office and misuse of public funds by the country’s Anti-Corruption Commission (ACC) says she can’t wait for the court to clear her of the charges against her.
Johansen has been indicted on six counts of corrupt practices but she claims all the charges are “false” and believes that “there are people who don’t want to see her in office” for the second time.
She expressed her disappointment in an interview during her visit to Ghana for the CAF Executive Committee meeting in Accra.
“I respond with deep sadness in my heart because obviously it is very clear that these allegations are false. These are allegations meant to discredit and distract me and those supporting me from the main agenda, which is for me to contest again.
But you know, it is good, because it’s been one year since the allegations were made and I have been waiting to hear from the Anti-Corruption Commission. So two days after I declared my intention of running again they decide to say something again, which is a sigh of relief anyway.”
But Johansen insist she won’t relent on her decision to stand for the second time, and insists that she will take immediate action to clear herself of the charges.
“We will go to court next month and am very much looking forward to that. And I can just move on to doing my business which is, I will run for the second term and I will focus on building our football.”
Johansen however admitted that there were “unethical practices” at the SLFA before she assumed office and that was why she came in to clean up.
“This is one of the reasons I came in, in the first place. There have been instances of corruption and unethical practices, which is the reason why I decided to come and clean up the football Federation,” she noted.
The SLFA was supposed to hold elections in early August but it was delayed by football’s world governing body FIFA until integrity checks on the current and potential SLFA executive members are carried out. Johansen’s reign as SLFA president since 2013, has been blighted by controversy and infighting. She is expected to appear in court for the charges leveled against her on October 30.