The referees enforces the rules of the game and in a game will make hundreds of decisions.

Referees determine when a violation or foul occurs and then stopping the game to issue the correct penalty.

In short, they are to ensure the game is played safely and fairly.

Recently, 231 BallLife decided to seek opinions. They posted a question on their Facebook page:

What Are Your Thoughts On The Style Of Officiating In The LBA??

This drew comments from a wider session of the public and here are some:

They’re lack of Ethics in officiating – Robert Vamba Sesay Jr.

They all we have!!!! Lets live and learn!!!!!
-Claudius Thompson

The league don’t paid them good how do you expect excellence from them they doing well while referring in a corrupt system with good skills… Respect to them 🤘 -Franklin A Smith

We in the year 2022 they ref games like it’s the 90’s – Tea Lamin

Very poor – Thomas Alexander Roberts

These are the few of the many opinions circling around the league regarding officiating.

For a fact, players, coaches and fans will always want to find something to blame for poor performances. Yes, these refs are humans and can miss a call here and there but let us also know that the refs we have capacity building is very low or non existent.

When was the last time they received training from a FIBA License Referees Instructor?

Just as coaches and players, refs also need to be train regulary not only to the new rules and interpretations, but to keep address to the latest happenings in the world of basketball.

Big leagues like the NBA fine players and officials for criticizing refs. Perhaps LBA can learn a thing or two from that.

Coaches should not shift blames to the refs when they themselves also lacking knowledge in basic coaching.

It is sadden to note that this season has seen more coaches thrown out or getting suspended then previous seasons for common issues.

Most teams do not have a statistician at the bench to mark the fouls of their players but you would find the bench complaining about the foul count on a particular player. Some coaches even gets surprise when their player foul out cause they are not following the number of fouls on players.

Secondly, coaches seems to focus more on calls been placed then strategizing what their next move is in order to slow down their opponent or even control the game. You will find such coaches calling for a time-out only to approach the table officials with complaints while their players stand unattended to, only to go back in the game with no instructions.

Are there solution been put in place? Yes! Mr. Ben Sayeh on numerous occasions has called for a new refs training workshops which are always poorly attended.

Currently a six weeks training is ongoing open to the public for free, yet you find a lot of empty seats.

If these coaches are serious about the calls they are getting why not nominate someone to attend these trainings or even attend one in order to get to know more about the rules and the inner working of officiating.

The ‘cry wolf’ on officiating should stop! These guys are sacrificing their time and efforts to control the game we all love. We need to gather around them and give them the support needed to not only get better at what they do but to also encourage others to be a part.

On the other hand, the refs also need to show the hunger and passion to learn and encourage younger ones to be a part as many of them are beginning to age. is calling on all stakeholders to do a better job in promoting basketball in Liberia and stop the blame game.


What are some suggestions you have in making the game better when it comes to officiating? Comment below.