The Nigeria Football Federation (NFF) and the Interim Management Committee (IMC) of the Nigerian Premier Football League (NPFL), yesterday, congratulated Sports Minister, Sunday Dare, FIFA Executive Committee member, Amaju Pinnick and Napoli striker, Victor Osimhen on their national awards.
While Dare has been conferred with the prestigious Commander of the Order of the Niger (CON) by President Muhammadu Buhari, Pinnick got the Officer of the Order of the Federal Republic (OFR) award and Osimhen received the Member Order of the Federal Republic.
“The National Award of CON conferred on Chief Sunday Dare by Mr. President goes a long way to underscore the character, diligence, competence and drive that the man brought to the job. Chief Dare worked assiduously to reposition Nigeria’s sports generally and posterity will be kind to him,” NFF president, Ibrahim Gusau said.
On his predecessor, Pinnick, Gusau said: “I am very happy to celebrate a goal-getter, an achiever, an accomplished administrator and an eminent world citizen, Mr. Amaju Melvin Pinnick on this award.
“He is quite deserving, but I must thank President Buhari for recognising the hard work and diligence of Mr. Pinnick in Nigeria, African and world football.”
Speaking on Osimhen, Gusau said: “The football industry has been given ample recognition this time and we commend our father, President Buhari for this. The award to Osimhen means that even as a football player, you can be honoured by your country for exceptional service and also for the way you represent the country abroad.
“We are proud of Osimhen and what he has done and continues to do with Napoli SC in Italy and for the Super Eagles.”
Also speaking on the awards, IMC Chairman, Gbenga Elegbeleye, who expressed joy over the honour done Dare, said the Agbaakin of Ogbomosho land deserves the honour having served the country creditably well as sports minister in the last four years. “Dare has done well as sports minister and I am happy he is getting this national honour from a grateful nation. I want to also thank Mr President for deeming it fit to reward hard work, patriotism and selfless service all of which Dare epitomizes,” Elegbeleye stated.
The former DG of the defunct National Sports Commission (NSC) noted that Dare has brought several innovations to Nigerian sports, which includes the new lease of life the nation’s domestic league is enjoying this season.
“Dare has no doubt done well for Nigerian sports and I wish him the very best in his future endeavours,” Elegbeleye stated.