Matsumoto, Japan, November 2, 2010 – Charles Kamdoum is the only African referee working at the FIVB Women’s World Championship in Japan, and that is in great part thanks to his country’s efforts to develop their technical skills alongside their national teams.
Charles Kamdoum is one of seven Cameroonian International Referees and the only representative of Africa at the Women's World Championship
Kamdoum is one of seven currently licensed FIVB International Referees in the West African country, which tells you a lot about the importance they are attaching to development. “After I became an International Referee in 2004, I worked at teaching the other six candidates who are also now confirmed,” says Kamdoum, who started refereeing in Cameroon in 1990 and participated in the FIVB Course in 2000 at Dakar, Senegal.
FIVB Women's World Championship Japan 2010 official page
“Apart from North African countries like Algeria or Egypt, Cameroon leads the rest of the countries within the African Volleyball Confederation in terms of the number of international referees,” Kamdoum added.
Although he is participating for the first time in a senior World Championship, Kamdoum is not a complete stranger to this environment as he has been present at many international competitions as physiotherapist for the Cameroon Junior or Youth national teams. “I also officiated at the Girls’ Youth World Championship last year in Thailand and I think my nomination for this tournament was a result of the way I worked in Nakhonratchasima last year,” he said. “But this also has been a great opportunity to learn many things from the senior referees and the Referee Delegate.”
As the most experienced referee from Central Africa, Kamdoum has been a familiar face when officiating at the final matches of the zone when his country is not taking part in them. “We are now in the process of increasing the number of referees and last June we held a seminar in Cairo where it was decided to have more competitions to develop players and referees and technical staffers,” said Kammoum, who is the Secretary of Cameroon’s Referees Commission.
Another key decision was to nominate one Referee Delegate for each of the CAVB zones who can organize courses and then elect those who participate in the FIVB Candidates Courses. “I wish to be nominated as the delegate for Central Africa and then transmit my experience to the other officials,” he said. “I am 50 years old now so I have five more years to remain active and continue expanding my knowledge and share it with my colleagues and those with aspirations to follow our steps.”