Sierra Leone team refused Seychelles visa over Ebola virus

Seychelles have refused the Leone Stars visa ahead of an Afcon 2015 qualifier on Saturday as a precautionary measure against the deadly Ebola virus in west Africa

The Sierra Leone Football Association (SLFA) has announced that the Leone Stars have been held up in Nairobi, Kenya on their way to Seychelles for the second leg of the Africa Cup of Nations 2015 qualifiers.

In an email to the general secretary dated July 31, 2014, the Seychelles Football Association president Elvis Chetty said the decision to stop the Sierra Leone delegation from entering Seychelles came from the government as a precautionary measure against the dreaded Ebola virus.

“Due to decisions taken by our Ministry of Health and Ministry of Immigration, we will not be able to host the scheduled match on August 2, 2014. We were looking forward to the encounter but please understand that this is beyond the control of the Seychelles FA,” Elvis Chetty said.

However, the Sierra Leone assistant coach Tom Harris and two players who were already in Seychelles received a warm welcome by the Seychelles FA officials who were at the airport to receive them on Wednesday.

Based on the above, Hicham El Amrani, the Secretary General of the Confederation of African Football has instructed the General Secretary of the SLFA to withdraw the Sierra Leone team from Kenya while the Afcon Organizing Committee decides the next steps to be taken.

“Following the confirmation of Seychelles FA that the game will not take place on August 2, you are hereby kindly required to return to Sierra Leone. The Organizing Committee for AFCON will seized to confirm its decision to grant Sierra Leone access to the next round, regardless of any sanctions that might be imposed on the Seychelles FA,” Hicham El Amrani said.

Meanwhile, the SLFA General Secretary, Christopher Kamara has informed the Sierra Leone delegation in Kenya and the three currently in Seychelles on the current situation and requested that they board the next available flight back home.