One club fingered in match-fixing saga
Safa has officially charged six match officials alleged to have been involved in match-fixing and corruption.
Last week, City Press reported that the association had suspended six referees and assistant referees for their alleged involvement in fixing matches at the ABC Motsepe League national playoffs in Bloemfontein last year.
The six, who cannot be named until they appear before a disciplinary committee, have been taken off the refereeing panel and cannot officiate at matches. Two of the suspended officials serve on the international panel.
Safa’s legal manager, Tebogo Motlanthe, confirmed the charge sheet had been sent to the officials.
He said they had been charged according to Safa’s misconduct rules and were expected to attend a disciplinary hearing next week (see box).
City Press has learnt that some of the confessions detailed how the officials colluded to fix matches in favour of one team. The fingered club that benefited from these corrupt activities cannot be named before its officials are charged. Motlanthe kept mum about how they did it. “That will form part of the evidence in court and at our hearing, so we can’t disclose it to the public. All we know is that they admitted to have taken money to fix certain matches. We have got this on record from the whistle-blower.”
Meanwhile, Motlanthe said the case involving ABC Motsepe League champions Maccabi FC and Vaal Professionals was postponed to May 21 and 22.
A fortnight ago, City Press reported that police in Vereeniging were investigating a case of alleged match-fixing involving Maccabi. The club’s officials allegedly offered money to Vaal Professionals players to manipulate their match last month. Motlanthe said the two teams asked for a postponement. Interestingly, Maccabi is represented by Norman Arendse, who is a Safa national executive member.
The club is to approach the Cape Bar to check if his involvement does not constitute a conflict of interest.
It is believed Professionals also wanted to apply to get the telephone records pertaining to the alleged transaction.