NEWS | SPORTS
By Lusekero Mhango
Procrastination, one of the major ailments of the Malawi society has also shown its ugly face in the on-going Simso Premier league, a situation Northern Region Football Association (NRFA) has bemoaned.
The concern comes in the wake of similar views which have been aired out by the football watching public over the late kick offs where it has become a norm for matches to kick off 45 to an hour later than the scheduled 2:30 PM kick off time.
According to NRFA Fixtures Secretary, Ollens Msonda, the late kick offs are counter-productive to the league’s progress as NFRA is striving to make it (the league) more professional.
He said with the continuous late kick offs there is a risk of violence occurring if there is poor officiation in matches hence security is compromised.
“Looking at the competitiveness of games that are taking place, then it simply means there is a need for games to be officiated impartially and you can only get that in broad daylight,” he lamented.
Msonda said whilst clubs are partially to blame for arriving at matches late, referees are the ones who are behind the late kick offs as most of them are also unpunctual.
“When games start late and end late and if supporters are not satisfied with the officiation, fracas can breakout therefore the referees would be the victims but if the referees can hold time and begin matches at the scheduled time, it simply means part of their security is being ensured,” he reasoned.
Independent views from the terraces however show that most teams have votes of no confidence in the men in black due to their wanting in officiation. According to soccer pundit, Hilary Mwalwenje, most late kick off in the league are a result of teams’ rejection of the officiating panel due to the latter’s history of biases whilst in the line of duty.
“The NRFA are not serious on the kick off times it is as if they treat it as social football hence must act serious on the kick off times,” he said.
Meanwhile Chitipa United lead the 20 team member league with 22 points followed closely by Ekwendeni Hammers and Manyamula FC who have 20 points respectively.