Keshi lies in state
By
Pius Utomi Ekpei
Former
Nigeria skipper and coach Stephen Keshi has been laid to rest in his village of
Ilah, southern Nigeria, Friday afternoon, but without the fanfare promised by
the country’s government.
Keshi,
54, died on June 8 in Benin City.
However,
it was not the state funeral that the Nigerian government first promised with
oil-rich Delta State and Keshi’s family organising his final passage beginning
with a number of events on Thursday.
Nigerian
sports minister Solomon Dalung said the government chose a low-key funeral
because Keshi left behind a family that has to be catered for.
“I
am not shocked by the way the government has treated this event,” said a
disappointed ex-Nigeria captain and teammate of Keshi, Austin Eguavoen.
“For
instance, most of us have yet to get the houses the government promised us when
we won the Nations Cup in 1994.
“You
are only energised when you have been looked after.
“You
now wonder if Nigeria is worth fighting for or even dying for.”
Keshi’s
son Femi blasted the government for failing to honour a promise of a state
funeral for his father.
“The
federal government did not deliver on the promises they made to us as regards
our father’s burial,” he said.

Peter Rufai, Mutui Adepoju and other ex internationals

Keshi
made history in 2013, when he became only the second man after Mahmoud El
Gohary of Egypt to win the Africa Cup of Nations both as a player and a coach.
‘Big
Boss’ will also be remembered as the man who spared off the exodus of Nigerian
players to Belgium in the mid-80s when he signed for Anderlecht.
Culled
from www.guardian.ng

Photo
credits: AFP Photo

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