ANTI TERRORISM MATCH SET TO HOLD IN NIGERIA
With West African giants Nigeria fighting the war against terrorism, football is set to be used a tool for unification against the menace.
Football has been used not just as a tool for entertainment and competition but also as a unifying force. A novelty match is being planned, with the world biggest players billed to feature.
Big names in the round leather game such as Lionel Messi, Cristiano Ronaldo, Samuel Eto’o, Didier Drogba, Kanu Nwankwo are set to support the cause organized by a non profit, Next2none. The novelty match will also feature Jay Jay Okocha, Abedi Pele, Samuel Kuffour and legends of the game like Thierry Henry, David Beckham, Diego Amando Maradona et al.
Female football stars like Birgit Prinz, Sun Wen, Kelly Smith, Hope Solo, Sydney Leroux and local star Assisat Oshoala are not left out.
The initiative is called Africa My Africa and is scheduled for late May this year. The plan has the endorsement of FIFA, NFF, National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) and the National Agency for Prohibition and Trafficking in Persons (NAPTIP).
The chair of the initiative Ndukwe Sam Obu has said that the game would unite all nations against the common vices they face such as terrorism, insurgency, and human trafficking. Football would be the leverage, Ndukwe says, in bringing peace to different nations.
The game would bring up numerous challenges such as safety of all the top figures involved, scheduling conflicts, logistics concerns etc. However, if it works out, it would be an amazing platform for the organizers to address the issues head-on when football connects all the parties.