Guyana Football Federation (GFF) President Wayne Forde says that an independent committee will be established to investigate the accusations levelled by 17 referees against the Head of the GFF’s Referees Department.
Forde says the committee will comprise individuals outside the realm of local football which will ensure a transparent and impartial investigation.
“The matter is being addressed, it might not be at the level of expedience for some, but we place emphasis on thoroughness than expedience.”
While admitting that he is aware of the letter and most of its contents, Forde, who is also the Chairman of the Referees Committee, declared, “Anyone that crosses ethical lines will be held accountable, but we must respect everyone’s chance to have a fair hearing.
“I wish to repeat that as far as I am aware, no written complaint has been received by the office of the General Secretary Renella Bourne. However, that does not reduce the seriousness that I have assigned to the situation.”
On February 2nd, male and female referees signed a three page letter, calling for the removal of the head of the referees department, citing unprofessionalism and incompetence amongst other issues.
Amongst the criticisms aimed at Lancaster in the letter were victimization, withholding of information and a general dereliction of his duties.
However, Stabroek Sport also spoke to two referees under the condition of anonymity.
According to one referee, “To me this is just another way to delay and frustrate us. They have said this before and nothing has been forthcoming. They have many things they [GFF] are investigating and you are not hearing anything. It’s a total waste of time.”
The official added, “It’s just sweet talk, let’s see what happens. You have all the allegations and only a small group of persons tarnishing your body’s reputation. Its investigation on investigation, I honestly don’t know what will happen.” Another referee stated, “I have been hearing about investigations since last year. They said they would install an independent body to investigate so I don’t know that else to say. I think that it could be good once the information comes forward and is not withheld. You have several females that are afraid to talk and I don’t know they will get them to come forward. Once they get that to happen, everything will be okay.”