A referee in the Northern Region Simso League irked teams and officials when he responded to a phone call while officiating a match.
During a game between former Super League side Kabwafu and Fish Eagles, referee Blessings Mwanguku was seen answering calls and texting while the game was in progress.
Kabwafu won the game 2-1 to move from position 20 to position 15 on the Simso log table.
The incident has however led to questions over officiating standards in the league.
Football analyst Boniface Mwanjagha said the behavior is killing football in Malawi.
“It’s sad news to hear that the referee on duty responding a call while on duty, and I don’t think that is acceptable. That kind of behavior is increasing killing our football in the country,” said Mwanjagha.
General Secretary for referees committee in the North Clement Kanduku denied knowing Mwanguku saying he might not have been active for some time.
“That name is new. He might have done the refereeing course way back but was not active because every active referee need to pay a membership so that he or she should be recognized by the committee,” Mwanduku said.
He however condemned the referee’s behavior saying the committee will investigate the incident.
“We will find out if this indeed happened and we will act accordingly,” said Kanduku.
Regional referee responsible for fitness Charles Kalinga told Malawi24 that he will comment on whether Mwanguku passed the referees test or not after going through his data.
Northern Region Football Committee made an agreement with Northern Region Referees Committee to assign qualified referees in areas where there are no referees such as Hewe, Mbawa, Chilumba and Lura.