WINDHOEK – A case of common assault and assault by threat (case no. CR274/06/2018) was yesterday opened at the Katutura Police Station, by secretary-general of the Namibia Football Players Union (NAFPU), Olsen Kahiriri.
The firebrand unionist is accusing Young African FC owner-cum coach, Mali Ngarizemo, who is also an executive member of Namibia Premier League (NPL), of having assaulted him.
In a brief telephonic interview late yesterday, a shaken Kahiriri claimed that Ngarizemo slapped him twice in the face with an open hand and threatened to cause serious bodily harm, following a frenzied disagreement between the pair at the NFA Football House in Katutura yesterday.
According to Kahiriri, he went to Football House to deliver letters at the NPL office and met with Ngarizemo on his way out. The latter ostensibly used the platform to confront him about recent comments Kahiriri made about the NPL’s lack of urgency to implement certain policies and also about NPL chairman Patrick Kauta’s reluctance to respond to emails and phone calls from NAFPU.
A “hotheaded” Ngarizemo, as per Kahiriri’s narration, angrily cautioned the football players union’s front-man to stop “painting a gloomy picture about the NPL, in particular its chairman, otherwise he will be dealt with accordingly, because he is irrelevant in Namibian football”.
“After threatening me a couple of times, of cause I had to respond and told him why I made those remarks, telling him that I have emails and papers to prove that Kauta continues to ignore correspondences from our office…”
“…while I was busy trying to state my argument, the guy (Ngarizemo) suddenly slapped me twice in the face in succession whilst threatening to cause me more harm…being the civilised person that I am, I did not retaliate and rather went to the police station to open a case of assault. I will still engage my lawyers to deal with the matter because I will sue him,” said the firebrand unionist.
Contacted for comment late yesterday, Ngarizemo denied having assaulted Kahiriri but did confirm that a verbal confrontation did take place and a “few harsh word were exchanged in the process”.
“The man (Kahiriri) is lying, I did not slap him at all. All I did was push him on the chest while exchanging a few harsh words. The guy said my level of thinking is not at his level and that is when I pushed him and exchanged some harsh words. Kahiriri continues to insult people through the media, especially the NPL and its chairman, that’s why I went over to him to ask him why he continues to bring bad publicity to local football when others are working hard to improve the standard of football…”
“…as club owner, I have invested my money and time in football and for someone like Kahiriri to come from nowhere and start tarnishing the NPL is unacceptable, and I cannot sit idle and allow him to kill football.”