South Africa: Sports Minister Wants Urgent Report On Moses Mabhida Chaos

Minister of Sport and Recreation Tokozile Xasa urgently wants a report on the pitch invasion and violence that broke out at Moses Mabhida Stadium in Durban, which left 18 people injured, one seriously, spokesperson Vuyo Mhaga said on Monday.

"We really need to get to the bottom of what happened," Mhaga said, after the incident at a match between Kaizer Chiefs and Free State Stars on Saturday. The violence occurred after the final whistle left Kaizer Chiefs down 2-0.

He added that, although the inquiry into an incident at FNB Stadium last year was called off due to a legal challenge, "it is not completely off the table". In that incident on July 29, 2017, two soccer fans died and 21 were injured.

The Premier Soccer League (PSL) has already charged Kaizer Chiefs with "bringing the league into disrepute and misconduct" and summoned the club to appear before a PSL disciplinary committee on May 3.

Spokesperson Luxolo September told News24 that the security guard filmed lying prone after he was attacked, had been discharged from hospital.

Stadium manager Vusi Mazibuko said 18 people were injured when people suddenly broke through safety barriers after the final whistle and charged at the team, which fled to safety.

"Saturday's incident was shocking, to say the least," he said.

'It was really criminal'

Apart from seats being torn out, some were set light, safety barriers were destroyed, camera equipment was damaged, and even stadium plumbing had to be repaired.

"It was really criminal," said Mazibuko, who hopes to have a final assessment of the damage to the stadium by Wednesday.

"The ethos of sport is about the excitement of winning or losing and accepting the result," he said.

However, he said that in spite of Saturday night's events, other stadium activities continued on Sunday.

He explained that security arrangements were made in line with risk assessments by the SA Police Service and that the PSL was responsible for arranging private security.

On the night, about 27 000 people watched the Nedbank Cup semi-final before the final whistle blew and the chaos broke out. The risk assessment was planned for 30 000 people.

Aneme Security owner James Dlamini told News24 earlier that 375 guards from his company were deployed to the venue, and together with other companies, there were more than 500 guards in place.

Said Mazibuko: "We are disappointed. This is bigger than Moses Mabhida. It is the image of the country."

Meanwhile, Phelelani Jojisa appeared on a charge of malicious damage to property in the Durban Magistrate's Court on Monday.

His case was postponed to Wednesday. Police spokesperson Brigadier Jay Naicker said police had initially arrested two people, but alleged that only Jojisa could be linked to the incident so far.

Source: News24

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