Abuja - Some football enthusiasts on Wednesday in Lagos called for compensation for the family of the late Friday Njengo, who was a defender with the Manu Garba-coached Golden Eaglets.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the player had died on Tuesday, following an auto crash more than nine months ago.
He had died after being on admission in intensive care at the National Hospital in Abuja since the accident.
The late Njengo was involved in the accident on February 3, 2013 with a teammate, Adamu Abubakar, while travelling from Jalingo in Taraba to Calabar, Cross River.
They were on their way for the team’s first phase of final camping for the qualifiers for the 2013 CAF U-17 Championship, where the team emerged runners-up.
He was a regular in the team during the qualifiers for the African championship where the Eaglets overcame Niger, Guinea and Mali.
A cross-section of football enthusiasts however told NAN in separate interviews on telephone that Njengo’s death would be felt by the entire football community in the country.
They then urged the Federal Government, through the Nigeria Football Federation (NFF), to adequately compensate his family.
Joe Erico, an ex-international, said it was a pity that a budding talent lost his life that way.
He however said he was certain that government would compensate the family he left behind by taking care of them and ensuring they lacked nothing.
``It is the responsibility of the government to ensure that the late defender’s family is taken care of, because he met his death while he was on national assignment.
``No amount of money can bring him back, but a little care for their upkeep can help to ease the pains they feel,” he said.
Joseph Dosu, also an ex-international, said the NFF should compensate the late player’s family because he was on his way to a national assignment.
``Whatever the NFF can do to relieve his family of the pains of the unfortunate incident which happened to their child should be done.
``I cannot but stress the importance of this, because the young boy was on his way to serve his fatherland,” Dosu said.
Yekini Ayodeji, the chief coach of Prime Football Club of Osogbo, said the news of Njengo’s death upset him because he was interested in the late player’s skills as a defender.
Ayodeji said that Njengo was a talented player and that he was sure he would have eventually made it to the senior national team, the Super Eagles.
``I feel sad when I see young men that have their dreams and vision abruptly cut short by death.
``I pray that God in his infinite mercy will grant his family the strength needed to bear their loss,” the coach said.
Ayodeji also appealed to both the NFF and the National Sports Commission (NSC) to compensate the deceased’s family, saying no amount of money could bring him back though.
Fatai Amao, the coach of Sunshine Stars FC of Akure, also appealed to the NFF to take care of the late player’s burial expenses and also compensate the family of the deceased.
``This will go a long way to ease for the family the pains the late defender’s death left behind, since he died while on a national duty,’’ he said.