Former Burundi football play maker Papy Faty’s funeral has caused outrage in the country after his remains were received at Bujumbura international airport on Thursday 9th, Papy Faty who is believed to have converted to Islam was buried last Friday as a Christian a move that has angered the Muslim community in Burundi.
“His body wasn’t taken to the church this is also an achievement we Muslims we did…we did what we could we never kept quiet on this matter we tried our best we did what we could and the rest we can leave that to God,” said Burundi’s Mufti (Muslim leader) Sadick Abdallah Kajandi.
Papy Faty (28) died after collapsing on the football pitch during a match in Eswatini due to a suspected heart failure, the player was in action for his club Malanti chiefs against the Green Mamba in the Killarney stadium in Pigg’s Peak on April 25th.
Faty collapsed 15miniutes into the game and was rushed to the hospital from where he was pronounced dead, however his remains arrived in Bujumbura last week for the official burial with his mother deciding how his son should be laid to rest.
According to a local media Faty’s mother said that his son was a Christian and it was the family to determine how their son’s funeral was to be conducted.
“Here in South Africa our hearts are bleeding because of how he was buried I lived together with him in the same house for a long period and always went to the mosque together,” said Nsengiyumva Sadik a Burundian football player based in South Africa.
Despite having a child the deceased was never officially married, which according to the Burundian government left the decision to be taken by his mother or close family who are christians.
His death comes a few months away for the Burundian national team the Swallows (Intamba mu rugamba), to play their first ever game in the African Cup of Nations (AFCON) continent’s prestigious men football tournament.
Faty made 21 appearances for his national team with his last match coming March helping his country to qualify for the AFCON, Faty came on as a substitute in the crucial match against Gabon which ended 1-1 draw that proved enough for Burundi to qualify.