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Five football leaders suspended for sexual abuse in Congo


Fecofoot has announced the suspension of five prominent football leaders in the Democratic Republic of Congo following allegations of sexual harassment and abuse within Congolese women’s football. The initial suspension period is set for ten months, with the possibility of more severe sanctions pending further investigation.

This decisive action follows an exposé by Sport News Africa, which uncovered widespread sexual abuse and child exploitation within Congolese football.

The revelations have prompted a wave of testimonies, particularly from the women’s football sector, shedding light on the deep-seated issues plaguing the sport.

Journalists played a pivotal role in bringing these cases to light.

Among the most notable is Ramsi Koutounda, founder of Ndembomag. Koutounda, along with the author of the exposé, participated in a special program on Ziana TV on May 26.

During this broadcast, Jean Guy Blaise Mayolas, president of Fecofoot, intervened via messages and subsequently organized a press conference four days later to address the matter.

Mayolas committed to tackling the issue head-on, entrusting the federation’s Ethics Commission with the task of investigating the allegations.

Alphonse Dianguitoukoulou, president of the commission, swiftly announced the initial judgment, resulting in the suspension of five officials from all football-related activities.

The suspended individuals are:

– Ulrich Bakouetela (Tula Ka Tula)
– René Ondaye (President of Epah Ngamba)
– Césaire Léandre Samba (Vice-President of AC Colombe)
– Riga Obambi (Galactic Excellence)
– Ibrahim Mietoukouenda (Vice-President of AC Colombe)

These individuals have been given five days to submit their positions to the president of the adjudicatory chamber of the Fecofoot Ethics Commission.

The Ethics Commission’s swift action underscores the severity of the allegations and the commitment to rooting out misconduct within the sport.

However, this suspension may be only the beginning. Further legal investigations are anticipated, which could lead to more severe penalties and potential criminal charges.

The scandal has rocked Congolese football, highlighting the urgent need for systemic reforms and robust safeguarding measures to protect athletes, particularly women and young players, from abuse.

The revelations have sparked a broader conversation about accountability and the protection of vulnerable individuals within sports organizations.

As the situation unfolds, Fecofoot and the wider football community in Congo face significant pressure to ensure that justice is served and that such abuses are eradicated from the sport.

The outcome of these investigations will be closely watched, both within the country and by the international community, as a test of the commitment to integrity and safety in football.

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