The football community in Zambia is in mourning following the tragic death of former international player, Philemon Mulala. Mulala, who was a prominent member of the celebrated Chipolopolo generation of the 1980s, was killed in a dog attack at his home in Lichtenburg, South Africa.
According to reports, Mulala, 60, was mauled to death by his own three dogs in the garden of his residence on Saturday afternoon. The news of his death was confirmed on Monday and has left the country in shock and grief. Mulala’s wife discovered his body after he was declared dead on the scene by police.
Mulala was a versatile wideman and a prominent member of the Chipolopolo generation, which was nicknamed KK11 after Zambia’s founding father president Kenneth Kaunda. During his time with the national team, Mulala helped the team win their first major post-independence silverware, the East and Central Africa Challenge (CECAFA) Cup under the late Colonel Brightwell Banda in 1984. He scored twice in the semifinal victory over Kenya and was nicknamed “Shombo,” translating to “Hard Worker.”
In addition to his success with the national team, Mulala also enjoyed domestic success with local heavyweights Mufulira Wanderers in the mid-80s, where he was a teammate of Zambian greats Kalusha Bwalya, Efford Chabala, and Ashios Melu. Fans of the team have been pouring out their grief and remembering Mulala’s contributions to the team.
After retiring from professional football, Mulala ventured into business in South Africa and also represented Cape Town Spurs and Dynamos FC. “It’s such a tragic end,” said FAZ Spokesman Sydney Mungala. “Many who watched him, especially fans of Mufulira Wanderers, have been pouring out their grief. Many remember him from the national team days, where he won Zambia’s first major post-independence silverware,” he added.
The three dogs involved in the attack were subsequently removed from the premises by the Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (SPCA). “We remain with wonderful memories that the late Philemon honored us with on the pitch,” said FAZ General Secretary Adrian Kashala in a statement. “There is a lot that today’s players can learn from the deceased’s generation.”
Philemon Mulala will be remembered as a dedicated and hardworking player who left a lasting impact on the football community in Zambia. His death is a tragic loss for the country and the football community.