Hooli­gans will hear, but not see, matches

Weekend Argus (Saturday Edition) - - NEWS - ME­LANIE PETERS AND ZARA NI­CHOL­SON

TWO PO­LICE cells ca­pa­ble of hold­ing eight soc­cer hooli­gans each have been built at the Green Point 2010 World Cup Sta­dium as part of the tough se­cu­rity mea­sures be­ing put in place to curb bad be­hav­iour dur­ing matches.

Hooli­gan­ism at soc­cer sta­di­ums will not be tol­er­ated and those who mis­be­have will be locked up, warned the SA Foot­ball As­so­ci­a­tion WP pres­i­dent Ver­non Sey­mour.

“It sends out a clear mes­sage that when you set foot in this sta­dium you must be­have your­self,” Sey­mour told the Week­end Ar­gus.

He was re­fer­ring to the in­ci­dent last week when Kaizer Chiefs fans went on the ram­page at New­lands Sta­dium in a soc­cer game against home team Ajax.

Chaos erupted dur­ing the MTN8 semi-fi­nal. Chiefs have been slapped with a R500 000 fine. An amount of R350 000 has to be paid im­me­di­ately and R150 000 has been sus­pended.

About 500 seats were dam­aged on the grand­stand and un­ruly fans also threw bot­tles and vu­vuze­las on to the field.

One of the city’s 2010 direc­tors, Dave Hugo, said the two hold­ing cells could con­tain about eight peo­ple each. “They will hold cul­prits tem­po­rar­ily un­til they are taken to a po­lice sta­tion.”

Deputy Po­lice Com­mis­sioner An­dre Pruis has in­di­cated that as part of se­cu­rity mea­sures all host cities would have a ded­i­cated po­lice sta­tion with sep­a­rate hold­ing cells, a court­room for speedy judg­ments and a Home Af­fairs of­fice for pos­si­ble speedy de­por­ta­tions.

The Safety at Sports and Recre­ational Events Bill is also aimed at im­prov­ing se­cu­rity at sta­di­ums.

Sup­port­ers could face a fine or im­pris­on­ment if they en­gage in delin­quent and an­ti­so­cial be­hav­iour in­side a sta- dium venue, or along a route to it – in­clud­ing en­gag­ing in racist, vul­gar, in­flam­ma­tory, in­tim­i­dat­ing, or ob­scene lan­guage or be­hav­iour.

Af­ter a meet­ing with Ajax man­age­ment yes­ter­day, the CEO of the Premier Soc­cer League, Kjetil Siem, de­scribed the ac­tions of Kaizer Chiefs sup­port­ers as “dis­grace­ful” and said he be­lieved the in­ci­dent would serve as a wake-up call to the pos­si­bil­ity of hooli­gan­ism dur­ing the World Cup.

He said: “With se­cu­rity un­der the spot­light, the PSL will as­sist not only Ajax Cape Town, but all our clubs with se­cu­rity plan­ning and de­ploy- ment around Cat­e­gory A matches. We have al­ready de­cided to de­ploy 100 PSL se­cu­rity guards to Cape Town on Oc­to­ber 4 when Ajax Cape Town host Kaizer Chiefs in an Absa Premier­ship clash at New­lands.”

He said they would make pro­vi­sion in their bud­get for fur­ther train­ing in se­cu­rity mat­ters in line with World Cup stan­dards, reg­u­lar work­shops on se­cu­rity and a se­cu­rity man­ual be­ing de­vel­oped for clubs and the PSL.

Ajax Cape Town said it would look at in­creas­ing se­cu­rity and putting a more strin­gent man­age­ment plan in place when host­ing games at home af­ter Kaizer Chiefs fans went on the ram­page.

The WP Rugby Union has also said that the PSL would be de­nied games if they did not put proper man­age­ment strate­gies in place.

WP Rugby spokesman Gavin Lewis said the re­pairs to New­lands Sta­dium were com­pleted ear­lier this week and the sta­dium was now “100 per­cent”.

On Wed­nes­day night San­tos played Bloem­fontein Celtic at the sta­dium.

Lewis said they main­tained a “very good” re­la­tion­ship with Cape Town clubs San­tos and Ajax. “All the re­pairs are com­pleted and Wed­nes­day’s match went per­fectly. We still main­tain a good re­la­tion­ship with the clubs and we are ready for three rugby matches to­day.”

Asked whether they were con­cer ned about host­ing Chiefs, who at­tract the big­gest crowds with a rep­u­ta­tion for un­ruli­ness, Lewis said: “Our agree­ment with clubs and or­gan­i­sa­tions is only that we lease the venue. The man­age­ment is up to them, sub­ject to a proper man­age­ment plan. In fu­ture we would want to ad­dress it for big­ger matches”.

Ajax spokesman Mark Meyer said they had still not re­ceived the bill for dam­ages so he did not know how much they had to pay.

He said the PSL was re­spon­si­ble for last Satur­day’s man­age­ment plan and Ajax had been asked by the PSL which se­cu­rity com­pany they used.

They rec­om­mended ADT, who worked along­side traf­fic and po­lice of­fi­cials as a joint op­er­a­tions team.

Ajax face Chiefs in Oc­to­ber, again in the Absa Premier­ship.

“We will go ahead ac­cord­ing to the plan on pa­per. We have al­ways sub­mit­ted man­age­ment plans when se­cu­rity is our re­spon­si­bil­ity. We have used ADT for the past 10 years and we have faith in their ser­vice. Our plan in­cludes how much se­cu­rity and where they will be sit­u­ated. When there is an in­ci­dent, how­ever, it is up to the Joint Op­er­a­tion Cen­tre (JOC), po­lice and traf­fic in­cluded, and they make the call on how a sit­u­a­tion will be han­dled,” Meyer said.

Meyer said they were con­fi­dent their man­age­ment plan was suf­fi­cient to deal with huge crowds.

“How­ever, if a man is go­ing to pull a chair from the con­crete stand, it’s go­ing to take a while to get to him. But we feel our se­cu­rity plan is suf­fi­cient with the JOC. We don’t con­done this kind of be­hav­iour and we will pay what we need to,” Meyer said.


SIN BINS: Th­ese hold­ing cells have been built at the Green Point 2010 World Cup Soc­cer Sta­dium for fans who be­have like hooli­gans.

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