Gambian referee caught on camera receiving “bribe”

Thursday, June 14, 2018

Gambian assistant referee Ebrima Jallow has been allegedly caught on camera taking cash to influence a match in a documentary showing corruption on African football by Ghanaian investigative journalist Anas Aremeyaw Anas.

The documentary, dubbed “#Number12 and Betraying the game” was released to show Ghana’s football boss Kwesi Nyantakyi and hundreds of local and international referees and officials taking cash bribes and gifts.

The two-year undercover investigation indicted Jallow, who was recorded taking $500 from Anas’s men who posed as Ghanaian fans hours ahead of a West African Football Union (WAFU) tournament match between Ghana and Mali in 2017.

The allegation says the 33-year-old when receiving the money to influence the match said, “It’s happening everywhere in Africa (bribing referees) but it isn’t important. What is important there is the relationship.”

Jallow incurred the wrath of Gambians who were taken aback with revelations from the documentary. Ebrima Jallow, born in 1985, received his FIFA assistant referee’s badges in 2015.

The Gambia Football Federation (GFF) released a statement through its secretary general, saying that it is, “taking this matter very seriously and is currently doing everything possible to establish the facts but also strictly following the due process.”

The Federation’s statement added: “The appropriate committees and officials within the Federation have been on the case since the news broke Wednesday 6th June on social media platforms and some online newspapers.”

“We therefore crave the indulgence of the general public to be a little bit patient with the Federation, in this very crucial time.”

In his released statement, Ebrima Jallow said that he has decided to step aside and excuse himself from all Refereeing related matters until competent authorities look into the alleged bribery investigation.

“My stepping aside after this revelation is my personal decision and I have further informed my superiors Gambia Football Federation, Gambia Football Referees Association and Gambia Football Referees Committee about the decision.” he said.

According to him, he is not under any pressure to step aside but to act within the ambits of professionalism, adding that is acting according to his own conscience while he has been named and filmed in the video to do away from his career until all matters of investigation are completed.

He finally apologized to the general public for his act of gross misconduct which caused him a disruption to a sport he cherished. 

Author: Arfang MS Camara