Ghanaian players have expressed shock and deep sorrow at the news of the sudden death Tuesday of President John Evans Atta Mills, who passed on at the 37 Military Hospital.
Not long after the sad news broke, some national players and Arsenal’s Emmanuel Frimpong, who is awaiting approval for his nationality switch, sent messages of condolence on social media, particularly Twitter, to commiserate with Ghanaians and the bereaved family.
Black Stars and Olympique Marseille midfielder, Andre Dede Ayew, Juventus star Kwadwo Asamoah, Al ain striker Asamoah Gyan, ex-Asante Kotoko midfielder Yusif Chibsah all sent tweets to express their condolences.
Veteran goalkeeper Richard Kingson posted a terse tribute to the late president: May u rest in peace.
ASAMOAH GYAN 9?@ASAMOAH_GYAN)tweeted: Sad news for Ghana. RIP #President Mills
Kwadwo Asamoah (@Asabob20) tweeted:Got news that Ghana President John Atta Mills has died. Really nice man every time I met him. RIP.
André AyewVerified (@AyewAndre) tweeted: It’s a sad day and it’s with a deep emotion that I learned the death of our President mister John Atta Mills. All my regards and my support to his family and to the Ghanaian people. RIP our president.
YUSSIF CHIBSAH (@CHIBSONY17) tweeted: May his soul rest in perfect peace, J.E. MILLS #sad.
Emmanuel Y. Frimpong (@Frimpong26AFC) tweeted: Just Heard the Ghana President John Atta Mills Just Died…. May your soul Rest In Peace:
An astute sportsman in his hey day and later a sports administrator before his election in 1996 as Ghana’s Vice-President,
ex-President Mills was an active hockey player from his school days at Achimota School through to his days as a law lecturer at the University of Ghana, Legon.
Together with National Sports Authority Chief, Wolanyo Agra, they played hockey for the Veterans team until a few years ago.
The late President Mills was a former Board Chairman of the National Sports Council and one time Vice-President of the Ghana Olympic Committee in the 1980s.
He was a Board member of Accra Hearts of Oak, a position he held on to until he resigned when he was elected Vice-President in 1996.
The late Attta Mills, resplendent in the rainbow colours of Accra Hearts of Oak, had the honour of presenting the African Champions League trophy to Hearts captain Jacob Nettey when the Phobians defeated Esperance of Tunisia in Accra on December 17, 2000.
His tenure of president also coincided with great sporting achievements by Ghana not least a historic FIFA Under-20 World Cup by the Black Satellites and a quarter-final berth by the Black Stars at the 2010 FIFA World Cup.
His immense interest in hockey resulted in heavy infrastructural investment in the sport, with the construction of a modern hockey stadium in Accra to host the 2009 Africa Hockey Championship.