Malawian assistant referee Bernadetta Kwimbira will be on duty during the Women’s Africa Cup of Nations (Wafcon) opening match between Morocco and Burkina Faso at Complexe Sportif Prince Moulay in Rabat, Morocco.
Kwimbira will be the first assistant to Rwandan referee Salima Mukansanga, with Carine Fomo playing the role of second assistant.
National Referees Association General Secretary Chris Kalichero described Kwimbira’s achievement as great news for Malawi.
“We are very excited that one of us is flying the country’s flag in Morocco. Kwimbira went through several tests to be among the match officials at the tournament and she certainly did well. She deserves to be among the best.
“She is there on merit and we are wishing her all the best. We may not be doing well as a country in various football competitions but when it comes to referees, we are among the best. We are praying that God should continue blessing her,” Kalichero said.
Kwimbira is officiating her second Wafcon opening match after being first accorded with the honour in the 2014 Namibia edition.
She was also on duty in the continental showpiece’s final in 2018 besides taking charge of third place matches in 2010 and 2012.
Other global competitions that Kwimbira has taken charge of include the 2015 Senior Women’s World Cup, Under-20 2018 World Cup in France and the 2016 and 2020 Olympic Games.
Mukansanga is among the three women referees that world football governing body Fifa assigned to officiate at the World Cup finals in Qatar.
The Rwandan made headlines in January when she became the first woman to officiate at the Africa Cup of Nations.