CAF president Issa Hayatou: We are happy with Africa Cup of Nations refereeing
Posted: 10 February 2013 Time: 21:50
CAF president Issa Hayatou says he is satisfied with the overall performance of referees during the Africa Cup of Nations, despite some questionable officiating.
Tunisian referee Slim Jedidi was suspended for dubious officiating during the semi-final between Ghana ande Burkina Faso, which led to CAF reversing the red card that he had handed to The Stallions winger Jonathan Pitroipa.
Egyptian referee Grisha Ghead was sent home for his controversial handling of the group stages match between Zambia and Nigeria in which he handed Chipolopolo a late penalty.
South African referee Daniel Bennett also admitted to having made a mistake in the game between Togo and Tunisia, when he handed a yellow card to the wrong player.
However, Hayatou maintains he is satisfied with what he has seen.
“The reality is that overall we are happy with the officiating,” Hayatou told KickOff.com after the opening of Cosafa House on Saturday.
“Yes, there have been some mistakes that have been made by some referees that troubled us. Those referees, however, did stand up and acknowledged that they had made mistakes which is why we had to reverse some of those decisions.
“We do admit that the refereeing in three games was not what we wanted to see. Out of 30 games that have been played [before the third place pay-off and final] the officiating in 27 of those games was of the best that you can ever wish for, which shows that the quality of our referees was good.
“The reason why we had to reserve the sanctions on the two affected players was based on the recommendations made by the referee,” Hayatou says.
Hayatou also adds that he has been impressed with the organisation of this year’s Nations Cup.
“Overall the tournament organisation has been impressive compared to previous tournaments. The stadiums have been good, accommodation has been the best and the transportation had worked well. Even the players have shown that they really want to participate in this tournament,” Hayatou says.