Former Kenyan international defender Ezekiel Sacchi Akwana has issued an emotional call to the thousands of footballers across the world who passed through Mathare Youth Sports Association (MYSA) to come to the aid of the association that finances the 2008 Tusker Premier League (TPL) champions Mathare United.
Mathare Youth disbandment
The association has lately been undergoing difficult moments financially, which occasioned the disbandment of Mathare Youth, a team under MYSA’s sponsorship that was participating in the second tier Kenyan league and Akwana has seen enough.
-I am calling on all who benefitted in one way or another to come and rescue MYSA. The association is clearly going through difficult times and I will organise a meeting so that we can discuss how to step in, he said.
Time to give back
Akwana, who is currently the head coach at Mahakama FC, started associating with MYSA while eight years old and went on to spend over two decades there, going through the ranks to play for Mathare United from which he got his first international call up and he says it is time to give back.
The former Sofapaka and Rangers coach is just one of the many successful Kenyan football stakeholders who have gone through the organisation, headed by Bob Munro and speaking to futaa.com he said it is a shame for all the footballers Munro helped mould to watch as the 70 year old struggles to hold the organisation together.
Munro is like a father
-Munro is like a father to very many of us out here; personally, MYSA, under his stewardship paid my secondary school fees as well as ensuring I make a career out of football. I know I am not the only one who would like to change a child’s life in Mathare slum.
-Right now we may not be benefitting or relying on Munro and MYSA for anything but the biggest mistake we can make in life is forgetting our roots – Munro has helped us over the years and it is time to pay back. For example, I am sure that with everyone’s support Mathare Youth could not have gone down, an emotional Akwana told futaa.com.
Member of 1998 team
Akwana is one of the organisation’s pioneers. He was among the Mathare United players who proudly donned the team’s jersey when the team won their first major trophy, the Moi Golden Cup in 1998 under coach Jonathan Niva and won promotion to the top flight thereafter.
Mathare United galaxy
Harambee Stars captain Dennis Oliech, Simeon Mulama, Titus Mulama, Jack Oguda, Collins Okoth, Duncan Ochieng, Francis Kimanzi, Jamal Mohamed and Haevenar Maloba are among the many players who passed through the system on their way to stardom.