Former Coast Stars Captain Handas ‘Sodja’ dies

Charles Handas during a past event. (PHOTO/Courtesy)
Charles Handas during a past event. (PHOTO/Courtesy)

Charles ‘Sodjah’ Handas, the former captain of the defunct Coast Stars has on Tuesday been pronounced dead at the Nairobi West Hospital, succumbing to a chronic subdural hematoma.

Handas who had been admitted at the hospital since early February had been recuperating well before his condition worsened following a fresh brain bleed that ultimately claimed his life.

Former Harambee Stars Captain and teammate Robert Mambo condoled with Handa’s family and rallied retired and active footballers to offer support for the fallen star’s kin.

“It’s a big blow and I think Kenyan football has lost a legend. He was my senior at Coast Stars and it is there we shared great memories together. We idolized him because by the time we got to play together he had already won titles with Gor Mahia.

“He was a close friend of mine, taught us a lot and gave us all something to look up to. I’d like to condole with his family during these trying times and call upon my fellow footballers to offer their support,” Robert Mambo told Citizen Digital.

Others who sent their messages of condolence include his former team mates Ahmed ‘Katolila’ Breaik, Evans Orodi and Kenya Football Coaches Association (KEFOCA) chairman Ricky Solomon.

Early this month the management of the annual Koth Biro Tournament and family of former Oserian FC player called upon well wishers to help foot the Ksh200,000 accrued in medical expenses.

Handas is famous for leading Coast Stars to the African Cup Winners’ Cup first round matches in 2000 before ultimately crashing out 4-0 on aggregate to Canon Yaoundé of Cameroon; losing a single goal at home in Nairobi and 3-0 in Yaoundé.

Coast Stars had selected to represent Kenya at the tournament after Mumias Sugar FC was disqualified from the competition.

Coast Stars – whose home games were hosted at the then Mombasa Municipal Stadium – formed part of the top division up until 2004/05 where they played under the name Dubai Bank Limited Club after being sponsored by Dubai Bank.

Mambo and Emmanuel Ake are some of the club’s high profile names with the duo having made moves to European countries.

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Story By Mkalla Wa Mwambodze
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