Botswana, South Africa a ‘high-risk encounter’
Posted: 9 June 2012 Time: 11:00
The World Cup 2014 qualifier between Botswana and South Africa today in Gaborone will be treated as a high-risk encounter.
According to media reports in Gaborone, the University of Botswana Stadium, with a capacity of 8 000, is constricted and therefore, a risk for this encounter.
KickOff.com picked up on a report in The Voice that Fifa, CAF and BFA are concerned by a number of factors, amongst them the inadequate crowd capacity of the UB stadium.
Fifa’s security manager Bikkie Mbenge has been quoted admitting that the game is indeed a high risk affair.
“The capacity makes the stadium a high risk venue since many will be turned away even if they have the money. This is the biggest game between the two sides in many years and over and above that, it is also a vital World Cup qualifier,” he says.
Mbenge says that Fifa would apply strict safety regulations and take all the necessary precautions to safeguard fans from potential danger.
“The biggest fear in a game like this is the possibility of a stampede,” Mbenge admits.
A suitable venue could have been the national stadium just a stone’s throw from the UB stadium but apparently the stadium is incomplete owing to “political issues”.
The national stadium was closed in 2008 for refurbishments with the hope that it would be used as a training venue during the 2010 World Cup hosted by South Africa.
Tiyani wa ka Mabasa in Gaborone, Botswana