Auxilia Katongomara, Chronicle Reporter
FORMER Highlanders player and manager Amin Soma-Phiri was yesterday hauled before a Bulawayo magistrate for insulting a Bosso supporter following the team’s 4-1 defeat to arch rivals Dynamos a month ago.
Soma-Phiri, 51, is alleged to have insulted Jotham Ndiweni, a former police officer, with unprintable words in the presence of patrons at Highlanders Club House.
Appearing before magistrate Tinashe Tashaya, Soma-Phiri pleaded not guilty to the charges.
He said he had uttered the words in jest as he and Ndiweni were friends.
Carlington Dhliwayo, prosecuting, said on September 6 this year at around 7.50PM at Highlanders Sports Club, Ndiweni was drinking beer with his friends Partmore Ndlovu and Chronicle senior sports reporter Sikhumbuzo Moyo.
“As they were drinking beer, they were discussing the Highlanders soccer match which was played on that particular day and Ndiweni commented that it was better that Highlanders had managed to score a goal even though the team had lost,” Dhliwayo told the court.
The court heard that this did not go well with Soma-Phiri who then insulted Ndiweni with unprintable words.
Testifying, Ndiweni said Soma-Phiri insulted him after he had commented that although the team lost to Dynamos, it had played well.
This did not go down well with Soma-Phiri who said he was not in a good mood after the team’s loss.
The former Highlanders manager then allegedly insulted Ndiweni.
In his defence, Soma-Phiri said he was good friends with Ndiweni and did not mean to insult him.
Ndiweni, however, vehemently denied that he was friends with Soma-Phiri, saying although they had a sour relationship, they sometimes drank together at the club house.
Soma-Phiri, however, insisted that he was in good books with Ndiweni.
He said at some point when he was the Highlanders manager, he would hire Ndiweni to ferry players home after training.
The trial continues tomorrow