Football Association of Malawi (FAM) has urged Malawian FIFA referees to maintain their honesty and avoid behaviours to influence and manipulate games.
FAM Executive Committee Member Tiya Somba Banda said this on Thursday when he presented FIFA badges to five Southern Region based-beferees, who are on the FIFA list for 2020.
“It’s an honor to have 15 of our referees recognized by FIFA and it’s a great opening for the 2020 season,” Somba-Banda said.
“It is also great that five of the referees are women, which is an indicator that we have a lot of women who are interested and doing well in officiating the game.
“However, the referees need to know that to have a FIFA badge is not easy and with the progress that they are making, they will be assigned to officiate very high profile CAF and FIFA matches.
“In some cases, teams bribe referees to influence the outcome of the games. So they need to be strong and maintain their integrity,” he said.
In his remarks, referee Ishmael Chizinga hailed FAM and the Referees Committee for supporting the referees and promised that they will work extra hard so that they continue gaining the confidence from FIFA.
“On behalf of the FIFA referees in Malawi, I would like to thank FAM and the Referees Committee for always being there for us because our success is a sign that our bosses are making great efforts in ensuring that we grow to greater levels.
“Having received the 2020 FIFA badges, we will make sure that we continue to work hard so that we are given more international assignments.
Year 2019 was good because we had quite a number of assignments — some went for COSAFA, others the AFCON and World Cup qualifiers and next year, we want to go an extra mile but this can only be achieved if we work hard,” Chizinga said.
As the five referees were receiving their badges at Mpira Village in Blantyre, parallel functions also took place in Lilongwe and Mzuzu where seven and three referees respectively also got their badges.
The 15 referees are: Ibra Gabriel Mafuleka (assistant ref), Edward Kambatuwa (assistant), Innocent Kaundula (assistant), Easter Zimba (center ref), Eliza Chizinga (assistant), Eness Gumbo (center ref) and Godfrey Nkhakananga (center ref) from the Central Region
The Northern Region has Jonizio Luwizi (assistant), Mercy Kayira (center) and Clemence Kanduku (assistant)
The Southern Region one are Ishmael Chizinga (center ref), Gift Chicco (center ref), Joseph Nyauti (assistant), Happiness Mbandambanda (assistant) and Bernadettar Kwimbira (assistant).