The South African Senior Women’s National Team, Banyana Banyana, have undergone two presentations about match fixing and integrity – something FIFA and SAFA hold very dear.
This is the second offering to the team this year – it was first done earlier this year in Cape Town, and just recently when Banyana Banyana were about to depart for the World Cup.
All the 24 national teams that will take part in the 2019 FIFA World Women’s Cup in France next month will go through it again, this time to be offered by FIFA.
With match fixing a growing phenomenon globally, FIFA wants to root it out completely from the game.
The SAFA Integrity Office, headed by Mlungisi Ncame, is working hand in hand with FIFA to create awareness of the programme.
Some of the pillars of the Integrity Programme include: Prevention, Being Aware, Reporting and Sanction.
“SAFA and FIFA take this matter very seriously and are involved in an extensive awareness and prevention program for all the teams that will be participating in the FIFA Women’s World Cup 2019,” said Ncame.
Match fixing can be defined in a number of ways:
- Improperly influencing the result or course of the game
- Improper conduct to gain points or promotion
- Improper conduct to cause another team to gain or lose points
- Accepting or offering a bribe or reward to improperly influence the result or outcome of a match
- Illegal betting in football
So advanced and always ahead of the game are the match fixers that they now target players and match officials on social media, through Twitter, Facebook and Instragram.
Their other known modus operandi is:
- They attend major tournaments
- Loiter at hotels
- Always attempts to contact match officials and players
- More often than not, they flash money and assets
- Have the power of persuasion
“It is important for players and match officials to be aware that every action arranged with a match fixer will make you part of a global illegal betting syndicate and the consequences could be very dire – leading to be banned from the game for a period of time, or ending up in jail,” added Ncame.
The SAFA Integrity Officer has reiterated that everyone involved with the game of football should be on high alert because anyone could be a match fixer.
These can be classified under three categories:
- Direct (but off the field): criminals, club owners, club presidents, and club managers
- Direct (on the field): match officials, players
- Indirect: Coach, match organisers, agents, managers, retired players, owners, and family members
Ncame adds that the best way to get out of trouble is to do the following:
RECOGNIZE: Fixers are persuasive
REFUSE: The Approach to fix a match
AVOID: suspicious contact on social media
REPORT: to SAFA OR SAPS
SAFA has drafted the integrity declarations for all SAFA match officials, players of national teams and all SAFA leagues, as well as for all coaches.
“These are very important documents that have to be signed by all to show their commitment in promoting fair play, prevent and also report match fixing, corruption, racism, bullying, sexual harassment,” said Ncame.
*** The Association has an independent anti corruption hotline, and anyone can access it while remaining anonymous ***
- Independent anti corruption hotline: 0800222778
- Internal hotline 0794961262 / firstname.lastname@example.org