Five Malawian referees, among them Raphael Anthony, Jones Makuwila and Linda Chikuni can no longer handle domestic high profile and international matches as world football government body FIFA has chopped them off on Malawi’s 15-member quota for 2015 international referees and assistants.
They have been replaced by others after failing the FIFA Fitness Test, meaning they cannot officiate any international match.
Anthony has been replaced by northern region based Mabvuto Msimuko while Makuwila has lost the plot to Patrick Ngoleka from Central Region.
Men’s assistant list has also seen Kelvin Ngolanga, who is reportedly pre-occupied, replaced by Jonizio Luwizi with Edward Kambatuwa stepping in for Victor Nkhata, who failed the fitness test. FIFA has however maintained Clement Kanduku, Innocent Kaundula and Feston Kusekuse as assistant.
Women referees’ quota has also seen Linda Chikuni being replaced by Mercy Mziya. Grace Msisya, who handles TNM Super League matches, has survived the chop.
In women assistant category, Chikondi Mpindo has been replaced by Charity Ndovi, who has joined Happiness Mbandambanda and Bernadertar Kwimbira.
But Football Association of Malawi (FAM) and National Referees Committee (NRC) Referees expressed ignorance claiming they are yet to receive FIFA’s official list.
However, FAM Referees Development Officer Maxwell Mtonga said FIFA has the mandate to make changes based on variables such as age and performance.
“Nothing has changed really on the size of the quota apart from the change in personnel. However the list is unofficial.
“The excluded referees can likely be considered in 2016 if they can impress on these aspects,” said Mtonga.
With Anthony’s exclusion, the southern region has been left with one FIFA rated referee, Denis Ngulube, who has survived alongside Duncan Lengani from central region.Follow and Subscribe Nyasa TV :