A Member of the Executive Committee of the Nigeria Football Federation and Coordinator for the South-South zone of the body, Emmanuel Ibah, is dead.
He was 61 years of age.
Family sources confirmed to the NFF that Ibah, who was also Chairman of the Akwa Ibom Football Association, gave up the ghost on Tuesday morning after succumbing to complications from the new coronavirus pandemic. He was said to have underlying diabetic and hypertensive medical conditions.
Ibah, an energetic figure who showed intense dedication and commitment to the work of the NFF and Nigeria Football in general, was always at the forefront of preparations for matches of the Senior Men National Team, Super Eagles, any time the Eagles were playing in the Akwa Ibom State capital, Uyo.
The Godswill Akpabio Stadium, known as Nest of Champions, served as home for the Super Eagles during their successful qualifying campaigns for the 2018 FIFA World Cup finals and the 2019 Africa Cup of Nations.
Ibah was also Chairman of the NFF Protocols and Ceremonial Committee and Vice Chairman of both the Establishment and Referees Committees.
President of the Nigeria Football Federation, Amaju Melvin Pinnick, was crestfallen:
“I am just lost for words. I don’t know what to say. This has been a tragic year on so many fronts. Emmanuel Ibah was like a brother. He was my colleague from the South South on the NFF Executive Committee and a very loyal and supportive person. We have lost another pillar on the Board. May his gentle soul rest in perfect peace.”
Ibah’s unfortunate demise on Tuesday morning made him the third Member of the NFF Executive Committee and the fourth key figure in the NFF to pass away this year. He was predeceased by Member from the South East, Chidi Ofo Okenwa who died on 5th May and Musa Adamu Duhu who passed on 19th September. NFF’s Head of ICT, Tolulope Abe died on 29th August.
Born Emmanuel Augustine Ibah on 5th September 1959, he hailed from Urua Akpan area of Akwa Ibom State, and became a Member of the NFF Executive Committee after winning election at the last NFF Elective Congress in Katsina on 18th September 2018. He lost his wife a couple of years ago.