Morocco FA boss escapes CAF sanction

The Confederation of African Football’s (CAF) Disciplinary Board has decided not to punish Morocco Football Federation president Fouzi Lekjaa over an incident with an Ethiopian referee.

The Ethiopia Football Federation made a formal complaint to CAF that Bamlak Tessema was head-butted by Lekjaa in May after the second leg of the Confederation Cup final in Egypt.

Lekjaa, who is also a CAF vice-president, was at the match as president of Moroccan side Renaissance Berkane, who lost to Egypt’s Zamalek on penalties in the final.

“The Match Commissioner Gustavo Ndong Edu, indicated that some players and officials of RS Berkane confronted the referee and other match officials,” the report said.

“Based on testimonies and official reports, the Disciplinary Board established ambiguities in the reports regarding the incident and the alleged culprit.

“Therefore, the Disciplinary Board decided that there is insufficient solid and corroborated evidence to prove the culpability of Fouzi Lekjaa.”

It looks unlikely that Tessema will appeal against this latest ruling after forgiving Lekjaa in late July.

“I want to focus on my refereeing career. I don’t want to consume much of my time in going between offices in search of disciplinary action,” the FIFA referee said.

“So without any third party influence I forgive him (Fouzi Lekjaa).”

While Lekjaa was not punished, Berkane’s Omar Namsaoui was given a four-match continental club ban for displaying “violent conduct and confronted match officials during the medal ceremony.”

The Moroccan club was also fined US$30,000 for “aggressive gestures towards match officials by some officials and players,” and the “unsporting behaviour and violent conduct of technical team.”

This came on top of another fine of US$22,500 for Zamalek over the “use of smoke and fire crackers, use of lasers in the first half and the throwing of missiles.” –BBC

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