The National President of Nigeria (Football) Referees Association, Mr. Tade Azeez, has rejected a suggestion that football referees be allowed to carry protective pistol while officiating a match.
Major General Adolphius Chukwu (retd) during the first quarter of the 2017 Zonal Meeting of the Nigeria (Football) Referees Association/ Award of Honour hosted by the Imo State (Football) Referees Council I Owerri, advocated that referees all over the world be permitted to carry protective pistol during games.
The retired Major General who was honoured for his contributions to grassroots football development through persistent sponsorship of community football competitions, gave the advise as a panacea to the intimidations and physical assaults referees suffer while officiating matches, insisting that football referees deserve the right to self defense and protection.
He noted “if players and fans are aware that referees are authorized to carry pistols, they will no longer assault or intimidate the referees the way they do.”
But Mr. Azeez who was the Special Guest of Honour at the event disagreed with the prescription, saying it will destroy the beauty of the game.
He pointed out that there are several disciplinary measures geared towards checkmating the excesses of players and fans against the referees and recommended emotional control.