The Referee Committee of the Confederation of African Football (CAF) has appointed 47 referees and assistant referees – including Video Assistant Referees – from 31 countries in the continent for the 6th edition of the Total African Nations Championship (CHAN) holding in Cameroon from 16 January to 7 February 2021.
The Committee selected 19 referees, 20 assistant referees and eight video assistant referees for this first major competition under the COVID-19 era.
A female quartet is integrated into the squad, confirming CAF’s decision to include female referees in men’s competitions. They are central referee Lydia Tafesse Abebe (Ethiopia) and assistant referees Bernadetta Kwimbira (Malawi), Mimisen Iyorhe (Nigeria) and Carine Atezambong Fomo (Cameroon).
Iyorhe, a FIFA-badged referee, was one of the female match officials that took part in a training course in preparations for CHAN. Her inclusion is testament to her dedication, astuteness and preparedness for the task required in being one of the match officials during the competition.
There was also another Nigerian among the male assistant referees in the selection: Samuel Pwadutakam. He was licensed by the Federation of International Football Associations in 2019. In September that year, he assisted Adebimpe Quadri to officiate a 2022 FIFA World Cup preliminary qualifying match between Gambia and Angola.
The selection of the final group of referees was made on the basis of their physical and athletic skills, as well as their understanding of football including their ability to read the game.
The Total CHAN, Cameroon 2020 opening match between hosts Cameroon and Zimbabwe will take place on January 16, 2021 at the Ahmadou Ahidjo Stadium in Yaoundé at 17:00 GMT.