Posted by Mayowa Okekale, Abuja | 8 October 2017 | 2,030 times
President Muhammadu Buhari and President of the Senate, Bukola Saraki, on Saturday night congratulated the Super Eagles on their victory, minutes earlier, over the Chipolopolo of Zambia at the Godswill Akpabio International Stadium, Uyo, Akwa Ibom State.
Buhari, in a statement by his Special Adviser (Media & Publicity) Femi Adesina, described the hard-earned victory as “very sweet, soothing and a 57th Independence Anniversary gift to the nation.” He applauded the nation’s senior men’s football team for the feat of making Nigeria the first African country to qualify for Russia 2018 FIFA World Cup tournament, with a match left to play.
As he joined millions of football-loving Nigerians in rejoicing with the players and their coaching crew, President Buhari called on all Nigerians to apply the values of perseverance, resilience, discipline, hard work and team-spirit which propelled the footballers to excel since the beginning of the qualifying matches, to all sectors of national life.
The President promised that the Federal Government will continue to support the team within available resources so that the nation will maximise the unifying potentials of sports in general and football in particular.
He enjoined the entire team and Nigerian Football Federation (NFF) officials to remain steadfast and focused when they begin preparations for the global football fiesta in order to make Nigeria proud.
President Buhari urged public, private organisations and well-meaning Nigerians to continue to assist the Super Eagles as the team heads for a sixth appearance at the summit of football competition.
The President also appreciated the government of Akwa Ibom State for the invaluable support it has been rendering to the football team, describing it as worthy of emulation.
On his part, Saraki, in a statement signed by his Special Adviser on Media & Publicity, Yusuph Olaniyonu, said that he was in Uyo and witnessed firsthand the dedication, poise and consistency of our players, adding that these attributes of the team have given hope to all Nigerians that our team will represent Africa well at the next World Cup.
“I want to congratulate our players for the way they played throughout the whole qualifying phase,” the Senate President said, “From the way that they continue to play and improve, it is my hope, and the hope of millions across the country that our Super Eagles will represent our nation and the continent well at next year’s World Cup.”
The Senate President also stated that the Senate would work to ensure that our players are well equipped and well-prepared for the 2018 outing, while also urging the Nigerian Football Federation (NFF) and the Ministry of Sports to not take their feet off the pedal ahead of 2018.
“Right now, we must begin to plan and work towards victory for our Super Eagles,” Saraki said, “They have made us proud on the field, now, the NFF, the Ministry of Sports, the sponsors, and all concerned stakeholders must work together to ensure that our players and the team thrives at the World Cup.
“As our players continue to make us all proud and demonstrate the greatness in our diversity, I want to also congratulate all Nigerians. We can truly achieve great things when we work and stand together.”
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