In a heartbreaking turn of events, tragedy unfolded during the highly anticipated semi-final match between Nigeria and South Africa at the 2023 Africa Cup of Nations (AFCON) in Cote d’Ivoire. At least five Nigerians lost their lives in incidents that occurred during the intense game.
The fatalities occurred during crucial moments of the match, with reports indicating that the tension reached its peak when South Africa was awarded a penalty kick towards the end of the game. Additionally, fatal incidents took place during the penalty shoot-outs, with four Nigerians reportedly losing their lives.
Among the deceased is Samuel, a serving member of the National Youth Service Corps (NYSC), who tragically slumped and died at a viewing center in Adamawa. Dr. Cairo Ojougboh, a former member of the House of Representatives, and Alhaji Ayuba Abdullahi, the deputy bursar of Kwara State University (KWASU), also lost their lives while watching the high-stakes encounter.
Mikail Osundiji, a sales representative in Ogun State, was another victim who reportedly died during the tension-soaked match. Unconfirmed reports also suggest that Anambra-born billionaire, Chief Osondu Nwoye, residing in Ivory Coast, allegedly succumbed to the shock of witnessing a goal by Nigerian star striker Victor Osihmen being cancelled by the Video Assistant Referee (VAR).
Nwoye, a major spare parts dealer and CEO of Group Auto Promotion Cote d’Ivoire, collapsed in the stadium while shouting after the VAR decision. Despite immediate efforts to revive him, he was pronounced dead upon arrival at the hospital.
Dr. Cairo Ojougboh, an APC chieftain, reportedly slumped when a penalty kick was awarded against Nigeria. Ayuba Abdullahi, the deputy bursar of KWASU, passed away after watching the match till the end of extra time and experiencing discomfort during the penalty kick phase.
In Abeokuta, Ogun State, a 43-year-old sales representative named Mikail Osundiji collapsed and died after the central referee nullified Nigeria’s second goal against South Africa. The cancellation, which shocked viewers, is believed to have caused Osundiji’s sudden demise.
The tragic incident has left family members grieving, with Osundiji’s sister appealing to the state governor, Prince Dapo Abiodun, for assistance, particularly in providing scholarships for the children left behind.
As the nation mourns the loss of these individuals during a moment of football excitement, it serves as a somber reminder of the unpredictable emotions that sports events can evoke.
Source Link: Leadership.ng
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