4 May 2018– Referees’ development has taken root in all Provinces. This is evidenced by the increasing number of new young (cubs) referees who are undergoing training for the trade.

Last month, 13-year old Lucky Tshose from SAFA Ngaka Modiri Molema region in the North West province, was featured in an article on the SAFA website. He is trained and guided by his aunt, former ABC Motsepe League referee Miriam Tshose, who is currently a trainee match commissioner.

Another gem has emerged from Mpumalanga, SAFA Ehlanzeni region.

Lifa Hopewell Maminza is a promising young referee who officiates in Local Football Association (LFA) matches. The 11-year-old Grade 5 referee celebrates his birthday on 24 January. He has written and passed his Level 1 examination and is awaiting Level 2 results.

Maminza started refereeing when he was still a 9-year-old Grade 3 learner at his school, Ngwane Combined Primary.

His mother, Cindy Ndlala (a former ABC Motsepe League referee and a current trainee commissioner), trains and guides him and a group of other young boys and girls from his area.

Maminza says he wants to be better than his role model, Victor Gomes.

Like Gomes, he wants to handle the big Soweto derby between Orland Pirates vs Kaizer Chiefs very soon. He also wants to officiate in the World Cup finals.

“SAFA is elated with enthusiasm displayed by young boys and girls taking up refereeing as a career. They also need to take their education equally seriously because the Association needs educated match officials who will have a career to fall back on after they hang up their whistles,” said Tenda Masikhwa, SAFA Head of Referees.

Maminza is a brick in the construction of the structure, Vision 2022.