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PM’s directive to TFF, ministry amid city derby controversy

Tuesday May 11 2021
Derby pic

A cross-section of Simba and Yanga fans who turned up at the Benjamin Mkapa Stadium in Dar es Salaam last Saturday. The fans were disappointed as the match did not take place as originally announced. Photo| File

By MAJUTO OMARY

Dar es Salaam. Prime Minister Kassim Majaliwa has tasked the ministry of Information, Culture Arts and Sports, working in collaboration with Tanzania Football Federation (TFF), to reschedule the football match between the traditional rivals Simba SC and Young Africans FC (Yanga). Indeed, TFF’s Special Competitions Committee met yesterday evening on the matter - and are expect to give details of the outcome today.

In his speech in Parliament, Mr Majaliwa said the two institutions have to explain how football fans who paid to watch the match at the Benjamin Mkapa Stadium in the city would be refunded as the match did not take place as initially set.

“The ministry responsible for Sports and TFF have to announce a new date for the traditional rivals’ match - and also give detailed information on the matter. This is considering that thousands of spectators turned up for the match which did not take place, including spectators from abroad.

“Many football fans and other stakeholders are now waiting to hear from TFF and the Sports ministry on this, and I’d like to believe that the officials will do it as soon as possible,” said PM Majaliwa.

The match did not take place on Saturday at the Benjamin Mkapa Stadium as originally planned, and even after the starting time had been pushed back. In the event, Yanga boycotted the match on account of the delayed kickoff time. TFF changed the starting time from 5pm to 7pm contrary to Section 15(10) of the Premier League’s regulations, requiring any changes to a match must be made at least 24 hours before kick-off time.

TFF stated that the changes were made following a somewhat belated directive from the Sports ministry. TFF later issued another statement directing the Tanzania Premier League Board (TPLB) to give an explanation why the match was postponed. This statement contradicted the first one issued by TFF saying that the change in the match’s starting time was on a directive from the Sports ministry.

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TPLB issued a statement yesterday saying they received a TFF directive to announce the change in the starting time of the match. TPLB further said they announced the changes as they are required to honor and implement all directives from TFF, the African football governing body Caf, and the World football governing body Fifa!

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