The Gambia football fraternity is in a state of shock following the demise of highly respected coach Mr Peter Bonu Johnson early this morning.
The former national team head coach was struggling with illness for a long time before finally losing the battle.
The football, sports in general and the entire nation is mourning the death of a humble man, someone who did a lot for the country as an ex-footballer to his glamorous time as a coach.
Everywhere you turn now, especially on social media, it’s his picture and the caption “R. I. P” followed by some sad comments and nice sentiments.
This leaves me with the question, “Where was this love?” Where was it when he was sick, going from country to country, from doctor to doctor looking for treatment?
He was almost a forgotten man, I ask, what could have been done for him when he was still around or is it we only honor the dead?
Bonu, during his time at Flemins FC, discovered talents that went on to be massive national assets, two of them been Yankuba Ceesay alias “Mal” and probably the most popular of them all Momodou Ceesay alias Zicko.
Mr Johnson took Ports authority from the second tier of the Gambia National league to winners of the first division league and represented the country in the CAF champions league preliminary rounds all in the space of 20 months. He did tremendously well with the national youth teams when appointed head coach, especially the U-20 which he took to Canada. As senior head coach of the Scorpions, it was insubordination and disrespect from players and colleagues that cost him his job. Following his dismissal as scorpions head coach, he slid away from the limelight, probably to avoid the unfair and disrespectful criticism levied on him by our arrogant and naive fans and so-called sports journalists. Today, these same people are making him a saint on the very platforms they used to demonize him
We never know what we have until it is gone, we never give credit to who it is due till they are no more. Bonu is gone, but here, we still have Biri Biri, the greatest Gambian sportsman of all generations. What are we saying about him or doing for him? Only when he and others like him dies that we hypocritically open our love showers. What good is water to a dead plant?
To Bonu’s family, be strong, you are the only ones I am certain that knows what a great person he was and you’re the only that feels the pain, my thoughts, and prayers with you.
God bless The Gambia