Home » Sports » Ndlovu, Gorowa in Fight Against Xenophobia

COSAFA have lived up to their pledge to use the 2015 football tournament to fight xenophobia and roped in the former Warriors pair of Ian Gorowa and Peter Ndlovu among the competition’s ambassadors leading the campaign.

The organisation’s president, Suketu Patel, and his leadership resolved to use football’s power to unite communities and play their role in the anti-xenophobia campaign throughout the two-week tournament.

The regional body began the competition by staging a match between children of foreigners living in South Africa and those of the host country’s citizens.

They moved a gear up at the weekend by undertaking a cultural tour of the Moruleng area on the outskirts of Rustenburg — a largely rural community led by the Bakgatla Ba kgafela Royalty under Kgosi Pilane.

COSAFA also donated football kits and training equipment to the schools in the area with Gorowa and Ndlovu joining fellow tournament ambassadors, Esau Kanyenda of Malawi, Mozambican Manuel “Tico-Tico” Bucane and Jean Marc Etir of Mauritius in spreading messages of the need for African unity.

They also held brief coaching clinics at the primary and secondary schools they visited.

Gorowa, who has reached a unique milestone of having played for the Warriors, coached them and now a member of the COSAFA technical study group, spoke of his playing and coaching experience in Cape Town, Johannesburg and Pretoria.

“It is important that we respect each other as human beings. I have played and coached in South Africa and I have always felt at home and that is what it should be because we are brothers and sisters in Africa,” Gorowa said.

Former Warriors skipper Ndlovu also urged the South Africans to embrace all foreigners who come into the country.

“I came to play here at the end of my career in the UK because I felt that in South Africa I would receive love.

“We should not let xenophobia divide us. We are all brothers and sisters and we should always be united,” Ndlovu said.

Ndlovu, now a team manager at South African Premiership giants Mamelodi Sundowns, also spoke of the significance he attaches to the COSAFA Cup.

“The COSAFA Cup is the only Cup I won in my international career and it is very special to me. It is also a platform for young players to get noticed and secure professional contracts,” said Ndlovu.

Tico-Tico urged the youth to work harder and take responsibility for their careers.

“Football is about applying yourself from the time that you grow up and learn things. We are honoured to be COSAFA legends because it is a tournament that helps you to be exposed.

“I was in South Africa for 14 years and in those years I never experienced xenophobia.

“The secret lies in working hard so you cannot blame somebody for your failures, you just have to keep working hard,” Tico-Tico told the youth.

Captains of the respective teams have also been reading anti-xenophobia messages just before the start of their matches.

The messages read:

“We the national teams represented at the 14th COSAFA Cup held in the North West province , South Africa declare our opposition to all forms of discrimination and violence meted against fellow Africans”.

Source : The Herald