The country’s FIFA listed referees must work hard and aim for CAF and FIFA Elite A status to be considered for major football tournaments, FAM Executive Member and Chairperson of the Technical Subcommittee Tiya Somba says.
Somba Banda made the call on Thursday when he presented the 2021 FIFA Referee badges to Southern Region-based referees that include Happiness Mbandambanda, Ishmael Chizinga, Gift Chico, Joseph Nyauti and Bernadette Kwimbira.
Currently, Clemence Kanduku is the only male referee with a CAF Elite A certificate while female assistant referee Bernadette Kwimbira is the only referee with both FIFA Elite A and CAF Elite A credentials.
Tiya Somba Bamba said hardwork and discipline is the only pathway for the local Referees to attain the prestigious CAF Elite A and subsequently the FIFA Elite A qualifications which grants them the privilege to officiate at CAF and FIFA final tournaments.
He said: “They should maintain good character both on and off the pitch and continue with the best performance on the pitch so that upcoming referees should emulate them and also teams should have confidence with them whenever they are officiating matches.”
FIFA approved 15 Malawian referees for the 2021 International Referees Panel, five of them from the Southern region, seven from the central region and three from the Northern region, FAM Communication Director Gomegzani Zakazaka said.
The presentation of badges to Central and Northern based referees took place last month.