The head of Zambia’s soccer governing body said on Tuesday that the pain of losing the entire national soccer team which perished in a plane crash off the coast of Gabon will continue to linger on.
Kalusha Bwalya, the Football Association of Zambia (FAZ) president, in remarks to mark the 22nd anniversary of the tragedy, said the pain of losing his colleagues has never waned.
“It’s been 22 years and still the pain never wanes. It comes and goes in waves. I guess it’s because we were so close…so close as friends and so close to glory on the football field.
This was a team of all teams; it was a remarkable group of men, brimming with talent, insatiable hunger and the will to win,” the 1988 African Footballer of the year said in a statement posted on his Facebook page.
Kalusha, who led other soccer loving Zambians in laying wreaths at the graveside of the departed players in Lusaka, added that the tragedy of losing the entire team will forever remain with soccer lovers in the country.
The government has however said it will no longer be taking part in the memorial of the team.
Sports minister Vincent Mwale said the government’s sole responsibility would be to maintain the burial site of the victims and it was up to the victim’s families to hold memorials, a statement that has riled family members. Xinhua News Agency