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Samuel Okwaraji – A True Nigerian Icon Forgotten So Soon

Posted: 15 August, 2016 at 08:34 am
Samuel Okwaraji – A True Nigerian Icon Forgotten So Soon
Samuel Okwaraji – A True Nigerian Icon Forgotten So Soon Photo 1

So disgraceful that the Nigerian Legend Samuel Okwaraji could be forgotten that way. It's exactly 26 years when the true national legend sacrificed his soul for the victory of Nigeria. Okwaraji lost his life at service for his country, slumping and later died of congestive heart failure in the 1990 FIFA World Cup qualifying match against Angola at the national stadium, Surulere, Lagos almost 13 minutes to end the match on 12 August, 1989.

This among his other commitments to his country. The law graduate and a football midfielder will pay for his flight to Nigeria for Super Eagle matches without collecting dime from the then Nigeria Footbal Association. This act has been buried among the footballers of nowadays.

Short History of Samuel Okwaraji

Samauel Sochukwuma Okwaraji was born on May 19, 1964 in Owerre-Umudiaka, Orlu Local Government Area of Imo State, South Eastern Nigeria.

He turned out to be the most educated Nigerian footballer with his qualification as a lawyer with a master's degree in international law from the University of Rome.

The attainment of master's degree in law is extremely challenging enough, not to talk of combining this professional with football. He also played for teams like NK Dinamo Zagreb, SSV ULM 1846 and VfB Stuffgart.

This national hero made his international debut in 1998, and later selected in the team that represented the nation in the African Nations Cup, after scoring one of the fastest goals in the football history against Cameroon.

His commitment also went beyond just serving his country; he also defended the right of his beloved country not to pay for his services when Nigeria was asked to pay $45.00 by his club SSV ULM 1846.

He reportedly visited his manager's office saying “I am a lawyer and you know. I signed to play football for certain conditions but I don't think it included reselling my services to my country. You or your club cannot stop me from playing for my country whether you like it or not.”

Now His Negligence by the Government

It was so disappointing that Okwaraji and even some of our gone heroes could only be remembered during death anniversaries; such memorable patriotism should be duly regarded and catered for. The government should either provide some compensation to the family of the heroes or even declare public holidays to honor them.

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Recent Replies (8)

fg way i think d writer is right - chika
A hero indeed ;(;(;(;(;(8-)8-) - Temple
please Nigerian let us not forget that RAPTURE is near, i use this opportunity to tell you people that HEAVEN is real and HELL is real,please i beg you be bornagain in CHRIST JESUS and may GOD bless you all.Amen - Eze@yahoo.com
Nice news - Eze@yahoo.com
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