Nigerian govt redeems pledge to Westerhof after 25 years

Babatunde Fashola, the Minister of Power, [right to Westerhof] Works and Housing, who presented the house documents to Westerhof in Abuja. [Photo: @AMTanimu]
Babatunde Fashola, the Minister of Power, [right to Westerhof] Works and Housing, who presented the house documents to Westerhof in Abuja. [Photo: @AMTanimu]

The federal government on Monday redeemed its pledge to provide a house for Clemence Westerhof, the Technical Adviser that led the Super Eagles to victory in the 1994 African Nations Cup competition.

Babatunde Fashola, the Minister of Power, Works and Housing, who presented the house documents to Westerhof in Abuja, said the promise was made 25 years ago.

He said Westerhof was the technical adviser that led the Super Eagles to victory in the African Nations Cup and qualified the team for its first World Cup in the USA in 1994.

According to him, many promises were made in moment of euphoria and elation, one of which was the allocation of a house which was never redeemed since 1994.

He said that Johannes Bonfrere, better known as Bonfere Jo, was also promised a house for leading the Super Eagles to the first Olympic football gold medal in 1996.

The minister said that the promise was forgotten, until it was redeemed by Muhammadu Buhari’s government in 2018, after 24 years.

“It was the public announcement of that redemption that brought to light, the commitment to redeem the promise made to Westerhof because immediately we became aware, we set out to work in the ministry.

“This is more than a house, it symbolises the commitment of the Buhari administration to right yesterday’s wrongs, redress yesterday’s injustices and bring Nigerians together,” he said.

Mr Fashola urged the Nigerian Football Federation (NFF) to document the promises made by government to identify those that have been fulfilled and those yet to be fulfilled.

He said that the idea was to provide clear records for the Ministry of Power, Works and Housing to act towards redeeming the promises.

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The Minister of Youth and Sports Development, Solomon Dalung, commended the power ministry for ensuring that the promise was fulfilled in the first tenure of the current administration.

Mr Dalung, represented by Tayo Oreweme, the Director of Federations and Elite Athlete Department in the ministry, said the exercise was in line with President Buhari’s tradition of fulfilling promises.

He said the president had in 2015 delivered the pledge he made to the victorious Golden Eaglets team when he was the Head of State.

Mr Westerhof commended the federal government for redeeming the pledged, adding that with the house, he would be more regular in Nigeria with his family.

(NAN)

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