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How we go the extra mile to support Super Eagles-Rafiu Oladipo



The Nigeria Football Supporters Club (NFSC) President-General Rafiu Ladipo has highlighted the spirit of fairness and discipline as one of the greatest attributes of its members.

Speaking to ARISE NEWS AFRICA in Abidjan, Mr Ladipo described the NFSC as one whose members make sacrifices to cheer the national teams and not a money-making venture as projected.

“It’s something that you are not paid for,” he began. “But you are the one spending the money.” Mr. Ladipo noted that his visionary leadership led to the establishment of several chapters of the club across the world.

Though confident the Super Eagles will go all the way in Cote d’Ivoire to win a fourth AFCON title, Mr Ladipo recalled instances where the NFSC has shown exemplary behaviour even in the face of defeat and provocation. 

“Back in 1995, we were in England for a friendly between the Super Eagles and the Three Lions at Wembley. Before we went into the stadium, they said we couldn’t go in with our drums, and I said, Where is the most senior police officer here? I went to him, and he said I needed to enter a bond, which I did, and we were allowed to go in.

“They won us, but we kept singing and dancing, so they had to come to us and ask why we were still singing after losing a game.

“I told them one team has to win and another will lose. We cannot lose our heads because we have lost [to them].

Expulsion of ‘erring’ members 

While facing the primary duties of supporting the Super Eagles in Abidjan, the NFSC is also taking time to weed out the ‘bad eggs’ in their fold.

During the week, the club announced the expulsion of the Abidjan branch vice president, Olarotimi Najeem Akinloye, citing misrepresentation and unauthorised actions.

Mr Ladipo, while making this disclosure, reiterated that Alabi Oki is the only recognised president of the NFSC’s Cote d’Ivoire chapter. 

He accused Mr Akinloye of falsely claiming the presidency and exploiting the current president’s health status.

“Not only did Olarotimi go to the Embassy to lie, he’s also using the name of NFSC with copies of a letter stating individuals belong to another group,” Mr Ladipo stated, without naming the group.

“We’ve decided, we’ve had a meeting, to say ‘you are no longer with us’, and today we want to announce his expulsion from the Nigerian football supporters’ club. Olarotimi Najim Akinloye, Aka Laaro. He is hereby pronounced dismissed from the Nigerian Football Supporters Club,” he added.

Mr Ladipo stressed the importance of unity within the organisation and rejected the notion of multiple presidents.

“Reverend Samuel Ikpea is our leader in the NFSC today and our backbone,” Ladipo declared. “Even as President-General, I still visit him because I respect the constitution and authority. He always explains things to me.”

Meanwhile, Mr Ikpea encouraged Nigerians residing abroad to rally actively behind the Super Eagles, emphasising their presence in Cote d’Ivoire to offer robust support to the national team.

The Super Eagles have been enjoying a great deal of support from the fans in Cote d’Ivoire as they press on for a fourth AFCON title.

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