Sata mourns ex-Chipolopolo frontman
Published On February 5, 2014 » 2969 Views» By Administrator Times » Sports, Stories
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.SATA

.SATA

By MOSES CHIMFWEMBE and ELIAS CHIPEPO –

 THE football fraternity has expressed shock at the death of former Zambia soccer team striker, Dennis Lota, who died on Tuesday.

 Paying tribute to late Lota, President Michael Sata said the former Power Dynamos striker’s passion and contribution to the growth of soccer in the country could not be over emphasised.

 “On behalf of the people and the Government of the Republic of Zambia and indeed on my own behalf, I would like to convey my heartfelt condolences and sympathies to the football fraternity and Lota family.”

 Dennis’ passion and contribution to the growth of the sport in this country cannot be over emphasised,” Sata said.

 The President said this on his Facebook page yesterday that Lota was a great and talented compatriot who flew the Zambian flag higher than what many had expected and imagined in diverse territories.

 “No doubt, Dennis will be deeply missed by many both home and abroad. May the Almighty God grant the bereaved family fortitude and comfort during this painful period,” the President said.

 Football Association of Zambia (FAZ) president, Kalusha Bwalya said he received the death of Lota with sadness because he had known the late for many years both on and off the field.

 Kalusha said Lota would be greatly missed.

 “I have been deeply saddened by news of the passing on of Denis Lota – my strike partner; a team player, a humble and dedicated colleague who served his country with distinction.

 It is with a heavy heart that I write on behalf of the FAZ this message and prayer for a servant of Zambian football who has sadly passed away at a time when he was starting to scale the football coaching ladder,” Kalusha said.

 Kalusha said Lota’s commitment and dedication to the game, hard work and admirable humility were a hallmark of his playing days and after retiring.

 He expressed sadness that Lota had died at time when FAZ got him involved in some CAF training programmes, the recent one being the CAF A license.

 Alex Namazaba, a former team-mate and now Power Dynamos assistant coach, said Lota was one player who never wanted to lose a game and was always eager to score adding that Zambia has lost one of its greatest sons.

 Hector Chilombo and Evans Sakala, who shared similar sentiments, said it was difficult to believe that Lota had died because he was in the country a few weeks ago to attend a coaching course and also sat on Moroka Swallows bench during their weekend fixture.

 Tenant Chilumba, who played alongside Lota in the Under 16 and senior national teams, said he was disturbed with the demise of a dear friend.

 Chilumba, who is now Power coach and Lota were behind Zambia’s 4-0 bashing of Mozambique when they both scored a brace during the All Africa Games qualifiers in 1995.

 “He was a good friend and we used to talk on phone every day. We played together as youngsters and we broke through the senior national almost at the same time. I am greatly saddened because most of the stars in our era are gone,” he said.

 Zambia Football Coaches Association (ZAFCA) vice president Lewis Shambulo said the death of Lota has come as a shock to the football fraternity because the nation has been robbed of a promising young coach.

 Nchanga Rangers coach Fighton Simukonda, who was head coach at Zanaco during Lota’s spell with the bankers, said he could not believe that his former player had passed on.

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