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Culture, Sport

Africa United

by Morrel Shilenge / 21.01.2014

The Confederation of African Football (CAF) is hosting yet another tournament in South Africa; (CHAN). A total of 16 nations will contest to be crowned the champions of CHAN. Despite the late efforts to market the tournament, a myriad of soccer fans relished the CHAN moment and made their way to the opening game at Peter Mokaba Stadium in Polokwane to see Group D matches; DR Congo versus Mauritania, and Gabon versus Burundi. Polokwane is one of the host cities of the CHAN 2014 tournament. However, tournament hasn’t elicited the same great emotion, buzz and excitement as the World Cup 2010.

Before now I was not aware of the competition. The African Nations Championships (CHAN) is a football tournament, conceived in September 2007. It is played between the best national teams of Africa, exclusively featuring players who are active in the national championships and qualified to play in the on-going season. CHAN, for me, is yet another sporting opportunity to bridge the gap and to create a United Africa. A dream for some of us where we appreciate our diversity, educate each other about our different cultures, help to reshape existing narratives about Africa, and deal with tribalism and regionalism. United in the love. Celebrating Africa.

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* All images © Morrel Shilenge

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