Former African Footballer of the Year Kalusha Bwalya described the fiasco at Thursday’s Glo/CAF awards gala in Accra as “crazy”.
This was the Chipolopolo defender, Stopilla Sunzu, appearing to have been presented with the African Based Player of the Year award, but later stripped of it.
Emcee for the occasion, John Barnes, admitted several minutes after Sunzu had been given the award that the real winner was Egypt’s Mohammed Aboutreika.
Sunzu, who was basking in the limelight after being crowned as the best player based in Africa for the year 2012 got a shock when the nominees were called back towards the end of the ceremony.
“It appears there has been a mixup,” a red-faced Barnes said.
The show hosts apologized for the mistake and Sunzu was thus relegated to third in the category.
“They said Sunzu was the winner, and we all saw it. Then when they had almost finished with the show, they come back and do this. It very much smells like yet another Caf conspiracy. Forget about the apology, it was not the emcees fault. It was crazy, just crazy,” Kalusha said after the event.
The Zambia FA president and former Chipolopolo captain was attending the ceremony and received the national team award on behalf of the Chipolopolo as well.
Sunzu, who has been outstanding for both club and country, was instrumental in Zambia’s win of the Africa Cup of Nations. He played all the Chipolopolo’s games.