Few hours after NFF president Amaju Melvin Pinnick emerged as Anglophone elected member of the FIFA council, friends, associates and well wishers have started sending congratulatory messages.
First on this list, is the Nigeria minister of youth and sports development, Sunday Dare. He was emphatic with his words as he saluted Amaju for making Nigeria proud before the committee of Nations. He also used the opportunity to once again appeal to him to use his influence and connections and his new office to help promote, project and propel Africa and Nigeria football
“This is an opportunity to use your new position to make Nigerian, African and World football great again and make it better than you met it. This is the reward of hardwork and unity of purpose. We are better off when we support our collective aspirations for the development of our great country. This is an honour well deserved”
A strong member of the Amaju inner caucus, Bukola Olopade, a former commissioner of sports in Ogun state and one man who labored day and night to see this dream turn a reality, also joined in the celebration after Amaju defeated his opponent Malawi’s Walter Nyamilandu by 43 to 8 votes on Friday in Morocco.
Olopade described the victory as a victory for football and victory for Nigeria. He saluted the courage and doggedness of Amaju Melvin Pinnick and appealed to all Nigerians to rally round him in his new assignment of repostioning world football.
Nigeria ‘Pillar of Sports’, Donatus Ejidike on his part said, Amaju has displayed the never say die Nigerian spirit. He described the NFF president as a resilient and hardworking man who is always at the top of his game. He used the opportunity to wish him the very best in his new assignment.
LMC chairman Shehu Dikko who also doubles as second vice president of the NFF, was full of joy. Dikko witnessed the voting live and endured the gripping tension. At the end, he said this…
” God has done it for all of us. We are grateful that he has given us cause to celebrate. Let’s join hands and make this our project. Amaju is a Nigerian project, we must unite in our support. I am indeed very happy today”.
NWFL chairperson Aisha Falode became a journalist in Morocco. She dropped her files to interview Amaju after the victory. To her, this is not a journey that started yesterday. Aisha has been a strong promoter of the ‘Amaju Pinnick project’ and today she went a step further to declare her undying support to the cause by becoming a journalist after many years of partial retirement.
An elated Amaju Melvin Pinnick stood tall and walked majestically to the podium as Africa stood up to salute a deserving son. A great man who has labored so hard to lift his head above waters. He traveled over twenty countries in one month as he hoped to make a statement of fact. That statement, he made in grandstyle on Friday after emerging FIFA Council member with a 43-8 victory.
Today he applied humility and calmness in his thank you message. He thanked president Mohammedu Buharri, the honorable sports minister Sunday Dare, his board members and all other key stakeholders for their support. He promised to use his new position to move world, Africa and Nigeria football to the next level.