15 Bosso fans arrested for Mandava violence
Zvishavane (New Ziana) – POLICE have arrested least 15 people for disorderly conduct following the disturbances that occurred at Mandava Stadium on Saturday during the match between Highlanders FC and FC Platinum.
The fans have been arrested for allegedly throwing stones and water bottles before invading the pitch in protest at a penalty, which FC Platinum had been awarded. The violence resulted in
the abandonment of the match, which was tied at one-all.
According to a police internal memo, the two teams were playing a Premier Soccer League match watched by more than 1 200 fans.
“In the 81st minute, FC Platinum was awarded a penalty and Highlanders players, led by Peter Muduwa, disputed the decision.
“Supporters on the Eastern stand who were predominantly in black and white regalia and supporting Highlanders reacted to the penalty decision by throwing missiles in the form of water bottles and stones onto the pitch towards players, match officials and the police, who had formed a barricade, forcing the match officials to stop the match,” reads part of the memo.
“The rowdy supporters moved in, scaled the perimeter fence and charged towards the police who retreated to allow the Highlanders captain Ariel Sibanda, Highlanders marshals and the police leadership to intervene with dialogue. The mediation took about 20 minutes.”
As Sibanda, the marshals and the police were trying to calm down the supporters, the Highlanders team manager, Vezigama Dlodlo, withdrew the captain.
When the players were about to resume playing, the Highlanders
supporters became more agitated and the situation degenerated into violence.
“The Highlanders supporters intensified throwing missiles, invaded the pitch and tore advertisement billboards. They also started throwing missiles at FC Platinum supporters on the western grand stand,” says the memo.
The FC platinum team bus, a green Scania was stoned and one of its right side window was shattered.
“Upon realising that the situation was getting out of hand, police
created escape routes on the eastern, western and main gates and repelled the advancing mob with tear smoke after dialogue had failed and the threat was increasing.
“After having been driven out of the stadium, the Highlanders supporters went on terrorising motorists from the stadium up to the Central Business District,” the memo reads.
In the CBD, Highlanders supporters heading towards Bulawayo stoned a Blue Horizon bus driven by Christopher Mutupo (42).