President of world football governing body (FIFA), Mr. Gianni Infantino and the Secretary General, Ms Fatma Samoura arrived Nigeria’s capital, Abuja, on Sunday, July 24, 2016, for a two day working visit.
Fifa officials were welcomed at the Nnamdi Azikiwe International Airport by the Nigeria football federation (NFF) President Amaju Pinnick, General Secretary Mohammed Sanusi, vice presidents Seyi Akinwunmi and Shehu Dikko, and other members of the NFF Executive Committee and Management as well as a host of football administrators in the country.
The aim of the visit is to consolidate FIFA’s commitment to developing grass root football in Africa and to promote cooperate support for football in Nigeria.
Infantino and Samoura are expected to have meetings with Senate and House sports committees, NFF General Secretary and other NFF board members, and the visiting FA presidents from other African countries before paying a courtesy visit to Buhari before watching an U-13 exhibition football match at the National Stadium, Abuja, after which they will visit the new NFF headquarters and later on have a business dinner with Nigeria’s political heavyweights and captains of industry.
The aim of the business dinner is to solicit for more private partnership and sponsorship in the development of football in Nigeria.
17 FA presidents from other African countries also arrived in Nigeria on Saturday to join the NFF in receiving Infantino. These are Kwesi Nyantakyi (Ghana), Lamin Kaba Bajo (The Gambia), Isha Johansen (Sierra Leone), Musa Bility (Liberia), Juneidi Basha Tilmo (Ethiopia), Nicholas Kithuku (Kenya), Andrew Chamanga (Zambia), Philip Chiyangwa (Zimbabwe), Frans Mbidi (Namibia), Chabur Goc Alei (South Sudan), Walter Nyamilandu (Malawi), Abdiqani Said Arab (Somalia), Vincent Nzamwita (Rwanda), Moses Magogo (Uganda), Jamal Malinzi (Tanzania), Augustin Senghor (Senegal) and Souleman Waberi (Djibouti).
The officials were greeted by a cultural troupe before heading to the Transcorp Hilton Hotel, where the FIFA president had meeting with NFF Board and the visiting FA presidents, after which they had a cocktail dinner.
At the time of writing this report Gianni Infantino and secretary general Fatma Samoura have already met with the leadership of the National Assembly today.
Olalekan Olonilua for encomium.ng