KALUSHA Bwalya says he has received the death of his coach Dickson Makwaza with great sadness.
Makwaza the 1974 AfCON finalist captain in the KK11 era died in the early hours of yesterday in Ndola after an illness.
After an illustrious playing career, Makwaza ventured into coaching where he equally succeeded with the pinnacle of his career in the dugout being the Seoul 1988 Olympics where Zambia reached a memorable quarter final with Kalusha demolishing defences of giants like Italy en-route to be named Africa Footballer of the year.
Makwaza’s son Linos played in the post-Gabon disaster Chipolopolo and is now assistant coach to Zeddy Saileti at Nakambala Leopards.
His grandson Linos junior currently plays for Power Dynamos Football Club in Kitwe.
In his tribute, Kalusha described legendary Makwaza’s contribution to Zambian football as immeasurable.
“It is with great sadness to hear of the passing of my former coach and long-time captain of the Zambia National Football team (KK11), Mr Dickson Makwaza. I have fond memories of our long time together at Mighty Mufulira Wanderers FC. His contribution to Zambian football is immeasurable,” Kalusha. “He led Zambia to the Africa Cup of Nations in 1974 in Egypt where Zambia reached its first final. It was the foundation and motivation on which Zambian football was built. To his family and friends, please accept my sincere condolences, we mourn with you. Wishing you strength at this most difficult time, may his soul rest in eternal peace.”
In the 1974 AfCON finals in Cairo, with Makwaza as captain, Zambia then popularly known as the KK 11 faced then Zaire in the final which ended 2-2 leading to a replay which Zaire now Congo DR won.
Makwaza went to become FAZ life member alongside greats of that generation like Abraham Nkole, Kaushi Kaodi, late Stone Chibwe among others.
And FAZ president Andrew Kamanga said the Makwaza was recognisable by his humility despite his achievements in life.
Kamanga said the association was saddened by the death of Makwaza senior who was also a life member.
He wished the Makwaza family God’s guidance during the period of mourning and beyond.
He said the game has lost one of its greatest icons.
“The FAZ Executive and the entire football family mourns Mr Makwaza. Mr Makwaza was one of the longest serving captains of the Zambia national team formerly known as KK11 and was also a Life Member. He was recognisable by his humility despite his achievements in life,” said Kamanga.
“It is our prayer that our modern day footballers learn from his great spirit of sacrifice and dedication.”
Funeral is being held in Luanshya along Ghana Circle road.