(By Vera Phiri and Tobias Phiri)
THE Confederation of African Football has lifted the provisional suspension of top Zambian referee Janny Sikazwe.
CAF suspended Sikazwe for alleged biased officiating during the Champions League semi-final between Tunisian side Esperance and Premeiro Agusto of Angola last year.
Sikazwe allegedly gave the home side a dubious penalty while the visiting team, Premeiro Agusto, were denied a legitimate goal.
With the match tied at 0-0, Sikazwe pointed to the spot after Agosto defender Jose Macaia was adjudged to have fouled Mohammed Belaili inside the penalty box.
When the scoreline was at 3-2, Agosto thought they had grabbed a third away goal but Ungenda had the goal disallowed after Mingo Bille was ruled to have pushed Esperance goalkeeper Rami Jridi.
The Angolan’s dissatisfaction with the referee got worse when Esperance delivered the final blow with Badri scoring the fourth goal after what appeared to have been an infringement on his marker, who attempted to clear the danger.
Esperance won the match 4-2 to dump the Angolans out of the CAF Champions League.
But CAF yesterday stated that the disciplinary board had decided that there was no sufficient evidence to implicate the involvement of Sikazwe regarding allegations of corruption made against him.
This was after having thoroughly checked the elements presented to them regarding the violation by Sikazwe of CAF regulations, in particular Articles 82, 136, 152, of the CAF disciplinary code.
“The provisional suspension of Mr Janny Sikazwe is lifted,” stated CAF.