Strong police presence for Nedbank Cup final after last year's stampede
Police will be on high alert when Kaizer Chiefs takes on TS Galaxy in the Nedbank Cup final at Durban's Moses Mabhida Stadium on Saturday.
Mayhem erupted at the stadium in April last year after soccer hooligans stormed the pitch following Kaizer Chiefs' loss to Free State Stars during a Nedbank Cup semifinal.
It resulted in more than R2.5m worth of damage to the stadium and the arrest of nine people.
Two months ago, one of the men, Kwezilomo Madiba, who repeatedly kicked a security guard during the pitch invasion, was sentenced by the Durban Regional Court to three years in prison.
He was arrested along with Siphosenkosi Knowledge Memela, John Sibongiseni Khumalo, Cebolendoda Hadebe, Douglas Mhlaliseni Mkhize, Nolwethu Cokotha, Zibongile Njova, Sihle Duncan Zungu and Dennis Thusi.
Madiba received three years while his eight co-accused all received three-year terms which were suspended for five years on condition that they are not convicted of the same crime during that time.
To avoid a repeat of that incident, police and the Premier Soccer League (PSL) have been planning for weeks to ensure that the final goes off smoothly.
"Police and other law enforcement agencies will monitor the event and ensure that there is peace and stability," said provincial police spokesperson Lt-Col Thulani Zwane.
He said police would also be on the prowl for fake tickets and the resale of match tickets.
"Police will continue with a zero-tolerance approach to fake tickets and resale of tickets," he said.
Zwane said knives, firearms, bottles and alcohol are banned and no one will be allowed on to the pitch.