More facts have emerged over the death of Joseph Kabungo, a medical doctor from Zambia who was the Confederation of African Football (CAF) doping control officer for the Super Eagles and Black Stars game at the MKO Abiola stadium.
Contrary to reports that he died after violence erupted at the end of the match in Abuja with him being beaten and stepped upon by irate fans, it has been revealed that he died of cardiac arrest, as he slumped while walking towards the dressing room.
According to the General Coordinator for the game, Kabeli Bosilong, Kabungo’s death was not related to the violence that occurred at the Stadium.
“I was the GC for the mentioned match and yes it’s true, our beloved Doctor is with us no more,” said Bosilong.
“Contrary to reports, the Doctor had a cardiac arrest when he was walking towards the team dressing rooms and he collapsed on the floor.
“Both team doctors (from Nigeria and Ghana) and other medical personnel administered Cardio Pulmonary Resuscitation (CPR) on him but after a while he was taken to hospital and that’s when the terrible news was confirmed.
Bosilong position was also confirmed by the Nigeria Football Federation in a statement after a meeting was held with officials of the High Commission of Zambia.
“However, it is important to state the facts as they are. According to the information from our own medical officer, Dr Onimisi Ozi Salami who was appointed by FIFA as Medical Officer for the game, Dr Kabungo was found gasping for breath near the dressing room of the Ghanaian team.
“I was notified and ordered that he should be rushed to the hospital. He didn’t make it. He died just as they got to the hospital,” NFF General Secretary, Dr Mohammed Sanusi said.
According to the statement, Dr Ozi Salami said the incident happened when he (Dr Salami) was looking to get the Nigerian player for the doping exercise, while Dr Kabungo was looking to get the Ghanaian player for the same exercise.
“I was heading to the dressing room of the Nigerian team when the General Coordinator, Kabore Hubert Bosilong from South Africa called my attention. Dr Kabungo suddenly started gasping for breath. The FIFA Security Officer for the match, Mr Dixon Adol Okello from Uganda also witnessed the incident.
“We tried to resuscitate him there and then, but when this did not appear to be working, we put him in an ambulance and rushed him to Cedar Crest Hospital in Apo, where he gave up the ghost. It is a very sad incident and one is shocked that some persons have been putting a terrible slant to the whole thing by saying he was beaten up by fans. That is a lie. He died as a result of sudden cardiac arrest.”