Cyprus Mail

Footballer’s son dies of malaria

A seven-year-old boy, the son of footballer from the Ivory Coast who plays for a local team has died from malaria at the Makarios hospital, where he had been transferred from a private clinic due to his deteriorating condition.
The malaria caused acute fever and prompted the boy’s admission to a private clinic on Saturday.
But after he deteriorated he was transferred to the Makarios hospital, where he dies at around 4am on Tuesday.
The child is the son of Gaoussou Fofana who plays for Omonia, which expressed its “most sincere condolences” and offered its full support.
The Pancyprian Footballers’ Union also issued statements of support, raising questions and demanding answers.
“There really are no words in instances like this, when innocent souls leave us so prematurely,” the statement said. “The little angel lost his life early today at Makarios hospital, and initial information suggests that his loss was due to malaria. As the official footballers’ body in Cyprus, and as an organised group seeking to improve our society, we demand clarification on the circumstances under which the seven-year-old angel lost his life.
“Had there been a timely diagnosis? And if so, had the boy been treated appropriately?”
The union pointed out that their questions did not imply blame, but merely sought answers so that “we can become wiser as a society.”
“We expect the competent authorities to explain what has happened,” the statement concluded.
An array of organised football-related groups issued statements of support, including the Cyprus Football Association, the Cypriot football coaches’ association, the Cypriot referees’ association, and football clubs Anorthosis, APOEL, AEL, Apollon, AEK, Doxa Katokopias, Ermis Aradippou and Othellos Athienou. All extended condolences to Fofana and his family, wishing them courage and strength during this difficult time.
Fofana, 30, moved to Cyprus in 2012 when he was signed by minnows Doxa Katokopias but his performances soon landed him a much better contract with traditional title contenders Anorthosis a year later. After a disastrous season for the club in which he was one of the few survivors, Fofana was signed by Omonia this summer.
In response to the death, the health ministry said malaria was not directly transmitted from human to human and cases usually concern people who contracted the disease abroad.

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