11 Feb Nigeria: Tragic Deaths Occur During Super Eagles/Bafana AFCON Semi-Final Match
By Ahmad Hadizat Omayoza, Mamos Nigeria
Wednesday night’s highly anticipated semi-final match between the Super Eagles of Nigeria and Bafana Bafana of South Africa in the ongoing African Cup of Nations (AFCON) tournament turned into a night of sorrow as reports emerged of multiple fatalities among spectators. The excitement of the match, which ended in a penalty shoot-out victory for the Super Eagles, was overshadowed by the untimely deaths of at least four individuals.
Among the deceased was Dr. Cairo Ojougboh, a prominent figure within the All Progressives Congress (APC) and former member of the House of Representatives. Ojougboh reportedly collapsed in his home in Abuja while watching the match, succumbing to a heart attack triggered by the tension of the game. Similarly, Alhaji Ayuba Abdullahi, the Deputy Bursar of Kwara State University Malete, and a corps member serving in Adamawa State identified as Samuel, also tragically passed away while watching the match unfold.
Additionally, Anambra-born businessman Osondu Nwoye, based in Cote d’Ivoire, suffered a fatal collapse inside the stadium while cheering for the Nigerian team. Furthermore, a sales representative named Mikail Osundiji from Ogun State died from shock after the cancellation of Nigeria’s second goal against South Africa.
Experts have underscored the potential dangers of intense emotional experiences, such as watching a thrilling football match, particularly for individuals with underlying medical conditions. Dr. Ramon Moronkola, a Consultant Cardiologist, emphasized the risk of heart attacks or strokes triggered by heightened emotions, urging regular health checks to detect and manage any pre-existing conditions.
The sudden deaths have prompted an outpouring of grief and condolences from across the political spectrum, with figures such as President Bola Tinubu, Senator Godswill Akpabio, Atiku Abubakar, and Delta State Governor Sheriff Oborevwori expressing their sympathies to the families of the deceased.
As the nation mourns the loss of these individuals, the tragic events serve as a stark reminder of the fragility of life and the importance of prioritizing health and well-being, even in moments of excitement and celebration. May the souls of the departed rest in peace.