Reports coming from Nigeria state that Rashidi Yekini has died in Kwara State. He passed away on the 4th of May 2012.
I just want to wish the late legend a peaceful transition to eternal glory.
Just last week, precisely on the 28th of April 2012 some friends were still talking about Rashidi at a social gathering here in Stockholm. They talked about his unfortunate situation since he left active football.
His famous quote was “NIGERIA DISAPPOINTED ME”!
One person asked at the gathering “who did Nigeria not disappoint”? We concluded that Nigeria disappointed herself and Africa.
Rashidi is the best goal scorer to have emerged from Nigeria. He scored 37 goals in 58 appearances.
He scored Nigeria’s first goal at the 1994 World cup in the 3 nil bashing of Bulgaria.
But how did Nigeria disappoint Yekini? It would be interesting to know the details from his family, friends and teammates.
Could it be different from the ways that Nigeria continued to disappoint sport men and women in general? I doubt.
The Nigerian government has perfected the act of honouring the dead while ignoring the living in both sports and other human endeavours where certain people have shown exceptional qualities.
Nigeria has disappointed 99% of Nigerians and the whole world.
Rashidi could be have given first class treatment when it was first reported a few years ago that he had some mental issues. Even if he had strained relationships with families and neighbours, the Oyo state government and the federal government could have acted quickly or intervened at the early stages.
I hope we will be told the cause of death in due time and that we can learn some lessons from the loss of this great son of Africa.
Yekini helped Nigeria and he put that name-Nigeria-on the world map in a special way.
In football we will not be able to separate Nigeria’s identity from the game the same way the Brazilians have not been able to escape the exploits of their living legend-PELE.
Rest in peace the gangling one, Rashidi Yekini.