Buhari Rewards 1985 Golden Eaglets | 30 Years After Team Won U-17 FIFA Championship

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President Muhammadu Buhari has finally complied with his 30 year-old promise to reward the Golden Eaglets team, which emerged victorious in the maiden edition of the FIFA Youth Championship held in China in 1985, while he was the military Head of State.

President Buhari on Thursday, January 21, at the Banquet Hall, Presidential Villa, rewarded them with a cash gift of N2 million to each player, while their coaches were given N1.5 million each.

The President also rewarded Nigerian athletes that excelled in 2015 (in football, basketball, wrestling, scrabble, and other sports).

Read below, President Buhari’s speech at the event and details of rewards given to the athletes.

“It gladdens my heart to play host to our dear athletes and officials who have consistently done the nation proud at various international competitions. Nigerian athletes, despite prevailing challenges, have always proven to the rest of the world that the Nigerian spirit is indomitable. On behalf of all Nigerians, I wish to specially express my appreciation and indeed that of the nation to our athletes and officials for the consistency, determination, willpower and penchant for success being witnessed in the sports sector in recent times. I urge the managers of this sector to keep up the momentum.”

“I wish to assure you that the Federal Government of Nigeria would not relent in its efforts to ensure that our sportsmen and women continue to excel in international competitions. I am particularly concerned about our participation at the forthcoming Rio 2016 Olympic Games. We must not allow a repetition of the unsavoury experience at the London 2012 Olympics where Nigerian athletes failed to make it to the podium.”

“This Administration’s policy of “change” must reflect in the way we do things either as individuals or institutions. We must strive to be prudent in the way we manage our time, financial and material resources to ensure victory at the next Olympics. We must aim for optimal performance at all international competitions. Your Excellencies, Great Nigerian Athletes, Distinguished Ladies and Gentlemen, I wish to remark that today’s event is very special to me because, Almighty Allah has, in His infinite mercies and love, kept me alive to this day and granted me the privilege of being able to fulfill my promise in 1985, to reward the winners of the maiden edition of the FIFA Under-17 World Championship.”

“The reason for the 30 years delay is well known. It is however sad to note that a member of the 1985 Golden Eaglets is not here with us today. Please join me in observing a one-minute silence in honour of Kingsley Aikhionbare who died in London, in 1996. It is a well known fact that so much water has passed under the bridge between 1985 and now. The State governments that were to implement most of the pledges to the players and officials have changed hands so many times under different dispensations and political parties.”

“In line with our belief that the “labour of our heroes past shall never be in vain” we will be saying thank you to our 1985 Golden Eaglets’ players and officials by using the Federal Ministry of Youth and Sports template for rewarding outstanding athletes.”

“As you are all aware, the financial resources of our nation have been dwindling since last year. Hence what we are offering you today, is not payment or compensation for winning laurels for your country, rather, it is a token of appreciation for your efforts and patriotism while competing for your fatherland.

In this connection, I have the honour, on behalf of the Government and sports loving Nigerians to announce the following as token of our appreciation to our sports ambassadors:

2015 World Wrestling Championship
Beneficiaries
Amount
Wrestler (Bronze Medallists)
N1,200,000.00
Coaches
N6,000,000.00

FIBA 2015 Male Afro-Basketball Champion, D’Tigers
Beneficiaries
Amount
Players (Gold Medallists)
N600,000.00
Coaches
N600,000.00
Team Officials
N250,000.00

2015 FIBA Africa Under 16 Female Championships
Beneficiaries
Amount
Players (Silver Medallists)
N400,000.00
Coaches
N400,000.00
Team Officials
N150,000.00

2015 IPC Asian Open International Powerlifting Championship
Beneficiaries
Amount
Gold Medallists
N600,000.00
Silver Medallists
N450,000.00
Coaches
N450,000.00
Team Officials
N250,000.00

World English Language Scrabble Champion
Beneficiaries
Amount
Player (Gold Medallist)
N1,500,000.00
Coach
N1,200,000.00
Team secretary
N450,000.00

WBC Silver Cruiser Weight Title
Beneficiary
Amount
Winner (Title Holder)
N1,500,000.00

2015 CAF Under 23 Cup Of Nations Champions
Beneficiaries
Amount
Players (Gold Medallists)
N500,000.00
Head Coach
N500,000.00
Assistant Coaches
N300,000.00
Other Team Officials
N300,000.00

2015 FIFA Under 17 Male Football Champions
Beneficiaries
Amount
Players (Gold Medallists)
N1,200,000.00
Head Coach
N900,000.00
Assistant Coaches
N600,000.00
Team Secretary
N300,000.00
Medical Team
N300,000.00
Other Officials
N200,000.00

1985 FIFA Under 17 Male Football Champions
Beneficiaries
Amount
Players (Gold Medallists)
N2,000,000.00
Coaches
N1,500,000.00
Late Aikhionbare’s Next of Kin should collect his money on behalf of his family.

Thank you all and God Bless the Federal Republic of Nigeria.

Datboyjerry

Datboyjerry

I am but your herald boy in the art of the pen.. An eccentric Environmental Biologist smouldered in the glorious epiphany of online journalism. If you ever find my article unduly insipid, sue me and i’ll refund you...

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