The Nigeria Football Federation has expressed deep concern for theplayers, officials and accompanying journalists of Sunshine Stars FC of Akure who are still trapped in Bamako, the capital of Mali, following renewed fighting in that country.Of the entire delegation, 10 players, four officials and two
journalists were trapped in the Malian capital after rebel forces launched a renewed surge into the capital. The Nigeria Federation become more concerned when news filtered into Lagos on Thursday that military forces stormed the team’s Hotel Columbus and ransacked a player’s room.
NFF President, Alhaji Aminu Maigari, who has been in regular phone contact with the leader of delegation and Chairman of Ondo State Football Agency, Chief Segun Adagunodo, said on Thursday that the situation called for prayers from all Nigerians.
“We are deeply concerned. Sunshine Stars went to Mali to represent Nigeria, and this situation makes us unhappy. We pray fervently that the situation improves quickly, so that the people involved can get out of Mali.
“I have been speaking with Chief Adagunodo for the past few days and although he says they are comfortable and have nothing much to worry about, it is important that they are able to get out of the place.
“We are watching the situation closely and may decide on an alternative plan to get the team of Mali if the situation persists for
a few more days”, said Maigari.
Maigari, as well as Chairman of Technical Sub-Committee, Barrister Chris Green, NFF General Secretary, Barrister Musa Amadu and Chief Media Officer, Ademola Olajire have been speaking regularly with Chief Adagunodo since the unfortunate incident.
Sunshine Stars FC played courageous game and were only forced to a 1-1 draw by Djoliba of Mali in the first leg of their CAF Champions League third round fixture in Bamako on Saturday