Cape Town — Bafana Bafana coach Molefi Ntseki has blasted the ongoing xenophobic attacks which have somehow damaged relationships within the African states.
On Tuesday, Football Association of Zambia (FAZ), pulled out of the intended international friendly between Bafana Bafana and Chipolopolo in Lusaka citing "security concerns" in South Africa.
Ntseki said that what is currently happening is not the true nature of African behaviour and it doesn't fit with the traditional African norms.
The newly-appointed Bafana coach said it was worrying to see fellow Africans attacking each other.
"It is very worrying. It is an unfortunate situation and we tend to forget that we are all Africans and we are all human beings and to take someone's life is not acceptable," Ntseki said as quoted by the official SAFA website.
"I think we must be united as Africans, let's protect each other. Africans are loving people and we need to reciprocate that love.
"Taking someone's life or having these xenophobic riots is not good for Africa; so, I am appealing to everyone that as Africans, let us be one, let us be united and let us have peace in Africa and when we have peace in Africa, we prosper as Africans."
The 50-year-old said that he was looking forward to playing Chipolopolo in his opening official match but accepted that circumstances would not allow that to happen.
"For us to play Zambia, it was an important match and we also wanted to strengthen relationships between the two countries not only on the football front but on every aspect of social life," said Ntseki.
"But with all what is happening, we are all disappointed because we really wanted to play against our brothers from Zambia and at the same time, prepare our teams for the upcoming AFCON qualifiers.
"This is a very unfortunate situation and I would like to tell Zambians that we love them, they are our brothers and sisters and something like this (xenophobic attacks) must never happen again," he ended.
South Africa will now welcome Madagascar to the Orlando Stadium on Saturday, September 7.
Kick-off is at 19:00.
- Compiled by: Tashreeq Vardien