Social media was yesterday awash with reports that an African soccer star was found dead in the Democratic Republic of Congo.
Zambia’s Rainford Kalaba was rumoured to have died in the Democratic Republic of Congo where he plies his trade with top league side TP Mazembe.
The news turned out to be a mere rumour when TP Mazembe’s media and publications manager issued a statement refuting what was reported. Speaking on behalf of the club, Gabriel Erivaldo denied reports about the 30-year-old’s death.
“I am happy to confirm that, contrary to the bizarre and unpleasant rumours circulating, Rainford Kalaba is alive and well,” he said as quoted by the Zambian Observer online publication.
Sources from Zambia indicate Zambia and Mazembe supporters started spreading the fake news. The reasons behind their actions remain unknown.
The midfielder who is currently captain for Zambia national football team, Chipolopolo Boys, is among the most decorated footballers in his country. He played a pivotal role for Zambia in 2012 as he helped the team clinch the African Cup of Nations in Gabon.
Last year he was voted Africa’s 3rd best player, in the category of those based on the continent. He has been part and parcel of TP Mazembe’s recent success in CAF Champions League and Confederations Cup.
The midfielder played for Portuguese club Sporting Braga before joining the DR Congo side.