Thousands pay last respects to George Chamangwana

Scores of people converged on Kamuzu Stadium in Blantyre Sunday to pay their last respects to the remains of Be Forward Wanderers Chairperson, George Chamangwana, who died on Friday.

It was a moving atmosphere as Wanderers players were joined by their rivals Nyasa Big Bullets as pallbearers— on the day the two teams were supposed to play in a TNM Super League match in Lilongwe.

Super League of Malawi (Sulom) postponed the match in honour of Chamangwana.

Top officials, including Malawi National Council of Sports Board Chairperson, James Chuma, Ministry of Sports’ Director of Sports, Jameson Ndalama, former Sulom president, Henry Chibowa, Football Association of Malawi (Fam) Executive Committee members, Daudi Ntanthiko and Daud Suleman, Sulom General Secretary, Williams Banda, Treasurer, Tiya Somba-Banda, Bullets Chairperson, Noel Lipipa, General Secretary, Albert Chigoga, Azam Tigers Technical Director, Robin Alufandika, former Bullets technical director, Billy Tewesa, and Wanderers’ sponsor, Be Forward Limited’s representatives were in attendance.

Some of Chamangwana’s former teammates, including Billiat ‘Angerezi’ Mkwapatira, and players of his generation, such as Kingsley Maulidi, were also present.

In their eulogies, Somba-Banda, Suleman, Wanderers Vice-Chairperson, Gift Mkandawire, Wanderers’ Captain, Francis Mlimbika, and Chigoga praised Chamangwana’s lifestyle, administration skill and support towards football.

Apart from using personal resources to bail Wanderers out of financial woes, Chamangwana also donated money to Bullets during the team’s Caf Champions League campaign in 2014.

Chuma, in his eulogy, said those that spoke highly of Chamangwana were not exaggerating.

“He was a Nomad to the bone. I can assure you that following George’s death, some supporters will not be able to travel to Mzuzu [to witness fixtures for the Nomads]. George used to fund their transport and accommodation,” he said.

Chuma said Chamangwana’s death had even shocked President Arthur Peter Mutharika, hence the opening of the stadium for prayers and body viewing.

“You should ask yourselves as to how many sports personalities have been accorded this respect. This shows that George was not an ordinary person in football circles,” he said.

Father Ven Mazimbo of Anglican Limbe Holy Innocence delivered a moving mass ceremony at the now closed stadium.

Chamangwana died at the age of 48. He is survived by two children and he hailed from Mlanda in Ntcheu.

His remains were buried at Misesa Cemetary in Limbe, Blantyre.

He started his career at Wanderers Youth in 1984 and two years later, he was promoted to the main team before he retired in the late 1990s.

He has also served as Team Manager and General Secretary for Wanderers. He became Wanderers’ Chairperson in 2012.-The Times.

July 2017
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