Francis Kot from the Hagen league was punched and slapped during the Digicel Cup Pool 1 match between the Kemel Hela Wigmen and the Mendi Muruks played in Mendi last month.
Following the attack of Kot all Digicel Cup matches in Mendi were called off by the Papua New Guinea National Rugby League.
Works and implementation minister Francis Awesa, who was there at that time, claimed that Temo was the first person to assault Kot.
Awesa condemned Temo for not leading by example as a public figure and that was the cause of matches being cancelled in Mendi.
But Temo denied last Sunday that he assaulted Kot because at that time he was no on the field as claimed by Awesa.
He questioned whether Awesa was not there at the field to watch the game.
Temo said Kot was not the referee but he was a touch judge at that time.
“The incident took place before the full time and I was not there same as Awesa,” Temo said.
Temo said by the time the incident was over he came back and was told by the people of what has happened.
He said this caused the PNGRFL to call off all Digicel Cup matches in Mendi indefinitely.
“I’m sorry for what happened to Francis but my name was mentioned for something that I do not have any knowledge of,” Temo said.
President of the Mt Hagen referees association Robert Willie said that the security of the referees and the touch judges must be guaranteed at all times.
Willie said what happened to Kot had deeply upset the referees in Mt Hagen.
Willie said the management of each franchise had to educate their supporters to respect people who are controlling the games.
“If there are no referees we would not have games so I call upon rugby league fans to change their attitudes.
Taking your frustrations out on a referee or linesman is the most cowardly act a fan can do,” Willie said.
Mendi police station commander Inspector Peter Buka also said that security would become his main concern for future games in the province.
Buka condemned supporters for not showing any respect to the referees and touchjudges.
He said that police in Mendi would deal with anyone who attacked referees in future. The National