“Africa Day is when we celebrate our freedom, culture, and heritage as Africans,” says the Zimbabwean attacker Khama Billiat. “Being an African means a lot to me because I get to learn about different cultures. I also get to explore the beauty of our land and have a sense of belonging.
“I urge everyone to preserve and respect our African cultural values of Ubuntu for the sake of the next generation.”
Africa Day is celebrated annually on 25 May by Africans from Cape to Cairo. Over many years Kaizer Chiefs has hosted a number of players from African countries and have played a role in amplifying the voice against any form of abuse taking place among fellow African brothers and sisters.
“I live with a sense of being a cultured and respectful human being,” adds Billiat. “Most of all I was taught to always carry the spirit of Ubuntu in me no matter where I am.”
The Nigerian shot stopper, Daniel Akpeyi also shared his emotional attachment to Africa Day. “Being African is a blessing to me. Because Africa is a place where if carefully studied, has a lot to explore. From natural resources to diverse and beautiful cultures. Africans mostly live for each other; we fight for each other. When I picture these things, I feel blessed to be an African,” says Akpeyi, before adding, “Africa has all it takes to beautify herself and it gives me the confidence that if work hard, I can achieve anything. While celebrating, we must remember the history of Africa and never take it from granted. It will teach us how Africa grew to become the continent it is and the deep price that was paid for its being,”
Lazalous Kambole, who was born in Zambia, draws the fighting spirit as an inspiration from being an African. “Being an African to me means being a fighter,” says the Zambian, “I never give up even when things don’t go my way. I am a fighter for what is right and focus on the brighter future ahead. All these are borne out of being an African.
“Let us stay united as Africans and embrace the spirit of Ubuntu, because when we are united, we are stronger and can achieve more.”
Kenyan International, Akumu Agay believes being African means that we live by our cultural values and norms.
“Every African who grows up in a society is likely to become infused with the culture of that society during the process of social interaction,” says the Amakhosi midfielder. “Africa shares different cultures, and we share a lot insofar as our belief system goes. We have similar values that distinguish us from the rest of the world.
“As Africans we must love, respect, and embrace our different cultural ethnicities. We must live with peace and harmony despite our geographical existence.”
South African International Mulomowandau Mathoho is upbeat about the future of Africa. The Tshiombo born defender says football is one unifying platform in the continent and the globe.
“Since I turned professional as a football footballer, mingling, and interacting with fellow African brothers is a norm to me,” comments the defender. “At Chiefs, we experience the integration even more given the multitude of supporters we have from all the different nations. We have raised our voice against xenophobic tendencies and continue to preach through our slogan, the message of togetherness and Love & Peace.”
“I am proud to be African. The spirit of Ubuntu and our different heritages makes us unique from the rest of the world. We are a beautiful and diverse continent and we must continue to live in peace and harmony as one.”
God bless Africa and give her peace.
Happy Africa Day to all Africans!