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Ministers speak as Aisha Buhari Football Invitational holds next week

Sep, 2021 | By Gyang Dakwo | ||

The forthcoming inaugural Aisha Buhari female football championship has continued to receive praise as a laudable initiative that will improve the lot of female footballers as well as the girl-child in Nigeria, Africa and globally. Nigeria will stage the six-nation tournament, named after the country's First Lady, Aisha Buhari, in Lagos.

Organizers of the cup said the invitational tournament would be an annual event in celebration of the evolution and development of women's football for the last 30 years as well as the celebration of the girl-child. This year, top women sides on the continent, including those from South Africa, Mali, Ghana, Cameroon, and Morocco will join host Nigeria in the soccer fiesta scheduled to hold from 13-21 September.

Notable among those who see the competition as a plus is Minister of Youth and Sports Development, Sunday Dare, who said that the maiden edition of the Aisha Buhari female football championship would bring about overall development in female football. The Minister made the assertion in his office in Abuja when he received in audience the Local Organizing committee of the competition.

He said: “Let me commend the wonderful work that has been done so far by the organizing committee towards having a successful event. I'm not surprised because the theme of the competition 'Playing For Good' is in sync with the vision of the Aisha Buhari Foundation which encourages the girl-child to excel.” The Minister assured that all necessary support will be given to make the competition a huge success.

“Whatever will unite people has the full support of the Federal Ministry of Youth and Sports Development. So my support is total especially since it has to do with female football. FIFA is unapologetic about female football development,” he stressed. In like manner, the Minister of Women Affairs, Pauline Tallen, expressed her support for the tournament. A statement by the Director, Press and Public Relations Unit of the Ministry, Mr. Olujimi Oyetomi, said the Minister pledged to work closely with Mr. Dare to ensure the success of the tournament.

Tallen stated that nothing was too small to honor an exceptional woman, mother of the nation who, she noted, stands boldly by her husband to ensure the peaceful development of the foremost and populous African nation even in the face of challenges. According to the Minister, football has a strong unifying force and knows no religion or tribe and is a tool to overcome most of the challenges countries in the West African sub-region are facing.

Also Head of the Nigeria Women Football League, Aisha Falode, who serves as Director of Organisation, Aisha Buhari Invitational Women's Football Tournament, has assured of the preparedness of the organizers to deliver a top-notch football showpiece befitting the personality of the First Lady. Falode, said: “The core values we preach in the domestic league sit pretty well with the cause of the Aisha Buhari Invitational Women's Tournament.

We always strive for the best in terms of organization and that is what we will go all out to recreate in the upcoming football fiesta. “Her pet project 'Future Assured' has been in the forefront advocating for the wellbeing of women, children and adolescents through health, education, economic empowerment and sports.'' Nigeria's Super Falcons have been drawn in Group A with Morocco and Mali for the preliminary stages of the competition.

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