For The First Time, Female Referees Will Officiate At This Year's Under-17 AFCON

In 2015, South Africa’s Akhona Makalima made history as the first woman to officiate a men's professional football match in Africa. Four years after, CAF has decided to appoint female referees for this year’s Under-17 Africa Cup of Nations.

As you may know, the Under-17 AFCON is exclusively a men’s tournament. So, this decision is particularly groundbreaking, as it will be the first time female referees will handle men’s tournament at the continental level.

According to the CAF website, the appointed female referees are Jonesia Kabakama from Tanzania, Mary Njoroge from Kenya and Lidwine Rakotozafinoro from Madagascar. They will join 26 male officials to undergo a training course in Casablanca.

So, while countries like Iran are busy canceling match broadcasts for the ridiculous reason that a woman is a referee, we’re super glad to see CAF showing a good example to African countries by taking a progressive stand in match officiating.

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