BY GEORGE ALUO
THE Nigeria Football Federation (NFF) has unveiled a three day burial programme for late Super Eagles gaffer, Stephen Okechukwu Keshi.
The soccer federation after a meeting with the Keshi family yesterday in Abuja agreed that the burial rites of the coach would run from July 27-29.
According to a competent source at the meeting, the burial activities will start in Abuja on the 27th, move to Benin on the 28th and rounded off on the 29th in Illah, his Delta State ancestral home, where he would be commit- ted to mother earth.
Daily Sunsports further gathered that Sports minister, Solomon Dalung who has endorsed the arrangements has promised to brief President Buhari and the federal executive council today on the plans put in place by the NFF and the family. The decision to bury the soccer icon in Illah has ended a rift be- tween Keshi’s kinsmen and his in- laws over where to bury him.
Keshi’s kinsmen it would be noted had yesterday fired a warning that their son can not be buried any- where outside Illah. Keshi’s in-laws on the other hand had allegedly proposed that he be buried in Benin. Keshi’s kinsmen had in a letter made available to Daily Sunsports via email stated in part: “ We believe that an issue of this nature needs no further elaboration as it is customary in Nigeria that most persons, particularly high profile personalities are buried in their hometown. To do otherwise, may portend some consequences in future going by the Illah culture and tradition.”
The letter which was signed on behalf of the Ogbe Onyeogu family Union, Ukpologwu, Illah, by Ogugua Ewenmaya pointed out that they had not been comfortable with a proposal by the Aburime family that they wish their in-law, Keshi to be buried in Benin.
Keshi’s kinsmen noted that the late Eagles gaffer was a Palace Chief of Illah having been conferred with the chieftancy title of Onwa na etiri Ora which literally interpreted means (The light that shines for all) by the Obi of Illah, Obi Nwabuenu Mebu, after he (Keshi) led the Eagles to the AFCON 2013 Nations Cup victory in South Africa.