President Akufo-Addo has responded to the passing of Edson Arantes do Nascimento, better known as Pele, a giant in Brazilian football.
In a tribute, the President recognized Pele’s influence on football and how his presence has inspired numerous individuals all over the world.
“The whole world of sports is poorer today for the loss of one of its greatest figures, certainly its greatest soccer player, with the departure to Heaven of Edson Arantes do Nascimento, the iconic, legendary Pele,” he wrote.
“Those of us who had the privilege to witness his incomparable career will cherish forever the memories of skill, talent, determination, and sheer athleticism which we derived from his playing of the game he himself described as “the beautiful game,”” President Akufo-Addo concluded.
Additionally, he recognized Pele’s humanitarian efforts and work that helped him become a champion for the underprivileged, kids, teenagers, and black people as well as an inspiration to multiple generations of football players.
“The Ghanaian people, who admired him deeply join me in expressing our heartfelt condolences and sympathies to his family, the Brazilian people, the Brazilian government, and football and sports lovers the world over. There will never be another like him. May his soul rest in perfect peace with the blessings of the Almighty.”
Pele, probably the greatest player in football history, passed away on Thursday at the age of 82.
Born Edson Arantes do Nascimento, he set a global record by scoring 1,281 goals in 1,363 games over the course of a 21-year career, including 77 goals in 92 international games.
Pele was selected as Fifa’s Player of the Century in 2000. Pele is the only player to have won the World Cup three times, taking home the trophy in 1958, 1962, and 1970.
In recent years, he has experienced renal and prostate issues.
In September 2021, the Albert Einstein Hospital in Sao Paulo performed surgery to remove a colon tumor that had been found during normal examinations.
In late November 2022, he was admitted to the hospital once more.