Unruly supporters beat up referee
Senanga, June 24, ZANIS —–Suspected supporters for FAZ Division Two outfit Senanga Warriors have beaten up a referee after a match between their arch local rivals Senanga Leopards played at Senanga high school grounds yesterday.
The Senanga Warriors who failed to utilize their chances ended the match in a one-all draw.
The Mongu based referee Hector Mwamulamba was slapped and punched in the face by two suspected Warriors supporters who invaded the pitch after the final whistle as officials from the host team offered the match official no protection.
It took Warriors team captain Kakanda Kakanda to save Mwamulamba from further beating as he escorted the referee to his vehicle.
When the situation was brought under control, Mwamulamba complained to both Warriors and Leopards officials that beating up referees is hampering the development of football in Western province.
He said it would work to the disadvantage of Senanga teams if referees decide to boycott their games due to poor security for match officials.
“We are destroying football in the province, if referees decide to stop coming here, you are the people who will lose out,” he said.
Earlier during the game Mwamulamba had halted the game and complained to Warriors officials that the environment under which the game was being played was every hostile for match officials.
He complained that the host team was not doing enough to control their unruly supporters.
“How do you expect us to officiate a game like this, you officials are supposed to control the crowd, the environment is not conducive for officiating a game,” he said.
Warriors had taken the lead in the closing stages of the first half but Leopards equalized in the second half.
It is not clear what incensed the Warriors fans as Mwamulamba had awarded the hosts a penalty deep into the second half which they failed to convert.
The derby between two bitter town rivals was characterized by rough play on the pitch and unruly behavior by supporters off the pitch.