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Late Zambian soccer star Dennis Lota to be buried in South Africa

Sports Late Zambian soccer star Dennis Lota to be buried in South...

Denis Lota
Denis Lota

The late Zambian soccer star Dennis Lota will be buried here in South Africa at West Park Cemetery in Johannesburg, on Wednesday, February 12, 2014.

This came to light today when Zambia’s High Commissioner to South Africa Mr Muyeba Chikonde visited the funeral house to deliver a message of condolences to the Lota family on behalf of government.

Mr Chikonde said every body in government, including Republican President Mr Michael Chilufya Sata, and the general populace in Zambia were deeply saddened at Lota’s passing on.

He announced that that was the reason why the government would be represented by sports minister Mr Chishimba Kambwili at the memorial service tomorrow.

“The President has been consistently requesting for updates over this issue. Even as he was leaving London he called to find out on the status. This shows the importance that government and people of Zambia attach to this funeral,” Mr Chikonde said. “We are deeply saddened at the passing on of Lota. This is the reason why government will be represented by sports minister Chishimba Kambwili, myself and officials from Football Association of Zambia (FAZ).”

Mr Chikonde was informed by Mr Eugen Malao, uncle to late Lota’s widow, Bonita, that the burial ceremony will be preceded by a memorial service to be held tomorrow at Church of Johannesburg Harvest Time Clairmont, from 19:00 hrs to 21:00 hours, to be attended by family members, representatives from the PSL, Moroka Swallows, other dignitaries and mourners, in addition to the delegation from Zambia.

Mr Chikonde urged family members to settle any differences they may have amicably, saying the late Lota was a respected person, a unifier and humble.

He said while government was able to assist in repatriating the body to Zambia, it could not dictate to the Lota family on where his remains should be buried, as government is careful not to overstep its responsibility into the private life of the late soccer star.

During the meeting, a good friend of Lota, John Mphatsoe, bemoaned that Moroka Swallows would not be fully involved in the financial aspect of the funeral, and that it had only been left to individual members to make their contributions.

This prompted Mr Chikonde to announce that the government would look into the issue of purchasing the casket, and government, through FAZ, had also purchased four air tickets for the members of the Lota family to travel to South Africa for the funeral.

The late Lota starred for the Zambia National Soccer Team and several clubs in Zambia, including Nchanga Rangers and Kabwe warriors, before embarking on international stints in Switzerland, and South Africa.

After retiring from international football Lota settled in South Africa, working as assistant coach for Moroka Swallows at the time of his demise.

The late Lota is survived by a wife, Bonita and four children.

32 COMMENTS

  1. Still, Lota was also a Public Property, he should have been buried back home.
    Earlier this PF refused to help, now newspaper articles are now saying can’t negotiate with the Lota family is just self denial and propaganda of PF.
    Rest In Peace Dennis Lota and Healing to the family as well as the country.
    Lest we forget.

  2. So the Zambianwatchdog is once again correct , they mentioned that GOVT, has failed to bring the remains of LOTA home, and they are vindicated now. Its a sad development when LOTA was a dedicated footballer who has no roots in SA , went for Job unless the family tells us the WIFE bonet is from SA which i doubt, how will we honour him? even memorials, and why Govt today can say they cant interve in family affairs when they did intervene on Gabon disaters fellows, also intervened in bemba royal family issues, can we be told exact truth , please, even that MOROKA swallows i dont think they can confirm what is said about them, how much money would they spend to bury LOTA compaired to what they were paying him, even what he brought to the club. Very sad indeed, may God intervene, MHSRIP

    • @Anyoko, read the story again, your mind is polluted with hate for PF and the President. You did not even read the story, and concluded, shame on you. I thought after two years it would sink that HH lost elections?

    • @ Nyoko!!! Surely you are not comparing like with like. The victims of the Gabon air disaster were on national duty. That is why the government intervened…..Kaganizidwe???Let us not just ‘run our mouths’….

  3. Bonita is a Colored South African from Cape town and she is the one who insisted that hubby Lota be buried in SA..So the Lota family failed to convince her to have their Son’s remain taken back home..But all the same whether buried in Zambia or anywhere,nothing wakes u up from being Dead#RIP

  4. Ngoni zealot & Anyoko learn to read in full don’t conclude on the headlines.
    Your dullness if left unchecked has serious detrimental impact to the society or the entire world at large.
    Learn t o understand that Lota had a South African citizenry of which the family has decided to settle there. Don’t believe in blatant egotistical media like the Watch Imbwa. Those Galuz are drunk with hatred and sexy tribalistic infatuated characters of which if not careful you will be a Galu as well……………

  5. please bring and bury lota at home.y burie him there.u mean family members wil be going there every year for memorial and for how long?

  6. I’m sure Lota had made enough money during his playing and coaching career, therefore, if his family really wanted to bring his remains home they would have easily done so without financial help from Government.
    Whilst we still at it, i would like to advice fellow Zambians in diaspora that we need to take out life insurance policies. If you cant afford at least include in your will that you would like to be buried where you are based, not doing so is being irresponsible fooolish.
    Lota was a fantastic striker during his playing days and be greatly missed. MHSRIP.

    • One Breadwinner, feeding an extended “poor” family, regard it mdala in those ends.
      School fees for children, food, fuel, car service, health insurance, security, protection, shelter, clothes, church offerings, donations and many other bills amongst the 11, above.
      Be aware that his pay Cheque wouldn’t by far be compared to what other coaches from Chelsea, Bayern Munich, Orlando Pirates, TP Mazembe for example as an example.

    • Msana Wanjili you have hit the nail on its head. This is a warning to those of us in the diaspora. Please buy some form of life insurance. Dont always depend on government. Government has no duty to someone on a private mission. MHSRIP.

  7. Sorry does someone know the address and contact number of the Church of Johannesburg Harvest Time Clairmont. Just wanted to attend the memorial service

  8. @Anyoko and others CALLING GOVT. irresponsible are right, LOTA Should be burried in Zambia, in his home village MONZE WEST, so that the spirits sleep well and we can attend memorial every year, even the spirits of his talent in Soccer would come to young boys in zambia, now like this Bafana Bafana would use their sangoma tricks to tap the talent from our OWN, it is unAfrican to listen to a wife, who just had a contract with him, the Family comes first (GBM-principle), well MHSRIP and spirits to Zambia

  9. Our govt is just complacent over matters of national concern. Late Dennis Lota was not an ordinary Zambian but an icon of Zambian sportsmanship who served his nation without any hesitation in football competition. How does a government fail to even take charge this unfortunate loss of a son of Zambia. Pride and greed is at the cent re of all this complacency. I do not envisage a not well known Briton dying in Zambia and the British government fails to take charge of its national remains.
    PF govt and president Sata must be ASHAMED with this scandle. Four air tickets to South Africa for relatives to go and mourn Lota – what shameful greed, not gonna play tribal card here.

  10. Bring our NATIONAL HERO to rest at HOME.
    S.A is NOT his home. Infact that Bonita by virtue of marrying a Zambian ought to consider Zambia her & her CHILDREN’s home country.
    Imagine KALU dying(God forbid and being buried in S.A where he resides or Italy his wife’s home. Imagine that!
    For most of us, Lota ranks in the same heroic status as Kalu. So, get off your fat asses you toothless politicians & fight for the remains of this proud son of the soil to come to his rightful resting place! I dont care what this article says. It’s just wrong to bury Denis in exile

  11. I feel sad for the rest of his family members who are not able to raise money for the trip to SA. Fantastic footballer, MHSRIP.

  12. What ever you do in South Africa just never marry a South African woman.This is just a tip of an iceberg.If u want a short life go ahead and marry a South African woman.Rest in peace D.Lota.GOD BLESS ZAMBIA.

  13. Please we beg the government to say something in trying bring the remains Dennis, I hope Bonita talefimwena mu money. Who will sponsor the memorial services for the parents, after this I feel for the parents . Dennis MYSRIP. we shall live to remember you.

    we shall live to remember you.

  14. I am a South African and strongly believe that Lota “Chesa Mpama” , as affectionately known in SA should be buried in his country of birth. Unless he indicated in his Will that he wanted to be buried in SA. I sympathise with the family and friends who will not make it to SA ofr funeral due to unaffordability.

    Despite everything, “MAY HIS SOUL REST IN PEACE”

  15. @ Maloza. What spirits kanshi? Make a clean break with this spiritism, please. It is very retrogressive. If Lota had made peace with His maker while he was alive, that is all that matters in the end.

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