South Africa Football Association (SAFA) has lauded their match officials who handled the CAF Confederation Cup playoffs first leg match between Plateau United and USM Alger for refusing to be compromised to fix the game.
SAFA says the three officials namely center referee Victor Gomes and his assistants Johannes Moshindi and Athenkosi Ndongeni conducted themselves “impeccably well” by promptly reporting the attempt to bribe them to CAF for further action.
“Our referees conducted themselves impeccably well in the sense that they were able to identify and report the issue immediately to CAF for them to make further investigations on the matter.
“Because it was a CAF appointment they wrote a report and sent it to them, and they (CAF) are dealing with it,” SAFA’s head of referees Tanda Masikhwa said.
He added: “Our referees showed the rest of the continent and the world that they won’t tolerate corruption within the game.”
Gomes was offered $30,000 to fix the match that was played last Saturday in Nigeria but he declined. Home side Plateau United carried the day 2-1.
It is still not clear who offered the bribe but USM Alger have issued a statement stating the allegations are attempts to destabilize the club.
“For the management of USM Alger, this is just a hate campaign to destabilize the club. The USM Alger has always respected the sports ethics; the values that our club conveys do not allow use of this kind of practices.
“The USM Alger leadership is convinced that this campaign is nothing more than another attempt to sow discord among its ranks and cast stigma on its integrity.”
Neither Plateau United nor CAF have commented on the matter.