NFF approves monthly stipend for Yekini, Okwaraji mums

Samuel Okwaraji [Photo: PUNCH]
Samuel Okwaraji [Photo: PUNCH]

The Nigeria Football Federation has announced a N30,000 monthly stipend for the mothers of ex-internationals Sam Okwaraji and Rashidi Yekini.

The NFF made the announcement via Twitter on Thursday.

The federation admitted they were making the move following the recent initiative taken by the minister of youth and sports, Sunday Dare, in who approved a N10, 000 monthly stipend for Yekini’s mother during the eighth year remembrance of the football legend.

The NFF wrote: “In furtherance to, and in appreciation of, the recent pronouncement of the HM Sports @SundayDareSD to put the mothers of late ex-internationals Sam Okwaraji and Rashidi Yekini on a monthly stipend, the NFF has decided to support this noble initiative with a further monthly stipend of N30k to each of the two matriarchs.”

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Aside the pilot beneficiaries, the NFF also promised they would be doing a broad-based review so that more surviving mothers of ex-internationals that died in active service for the country would be supported financially.

“In addition, the NFF will henceforth review the situation of surviving mothers of our ex-internationals that died in active service for the country and resolve what to do for them on a monthly basis,” it said.

Yekini died eight years ago in Ibadan after retiring from football.

He had a professional career spanning more than two decades and was mainly associated with Vitória de Setúbal in Portugal, but also played in six other countries besides Nigeria.

Yekini scored 37 goals as a Nigerian international from 58 games and represented the nation in five major tournaments, including two World Cups where he scored the country’s first-ever goal in the competition against Bulgaria in the USA 94 World Cup.

He was also named the African Footballer of the Year in 1993.

Okwaraji was a professional footballer who played internationally for Nigeria.

He was also a qualified lawyer who had a masters in international law from the Pontifical Lateran University of Rome.

He collapsed and died of heart failure in the 77th minute of a World Cup qualification match against Angola at the Lagos National Stadium on August 12, 1989.



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