The Nigeria Football Federation (NFF) has commiserated with the family of Shooting Stars Sports Club of Ibadan defender Izu Joseph, who was killed on Sunday, reportedly by a stray bullet from the gun of a member of the Joint Task Force.
NFF President Amaju Pinnick was much grieved when he learnt of the incident and immediately put a telephone call through to the father of the late footballer, who narrated the tragic circumstances in which the young Joseph was killed.
Pinnick said afterwards: “I am sorely distraught at what has happened. It is a most unfortunate incident that has brought sorrow to the Nigeria football family, barely a week after we celebrated victory in a World Cup qualifier. This is painful.
“I want to appeal to our footballers to always be mindful of the company they keep and the places they go at all times, because they are special assets. At the end of the day, we all will die, but we don’t want to keep losing football players in the manner in which Izu Joseph died.”
Meanwhile, the father of the slain footballer has insisted that justice must be done in the circumstances which led to the death of his son.
“My son returned for the holidays and went straight to our home-town in Okaki, Mahuda local government area, Bayelsa State; only for me to hear that he had been shot, even after he showed them his identity card as a player of Shooting Stars Sports Club of Ibadan.
“I demand justice for the death of my son who was killed without due investigation. My first son broke the news to me and, according to him, the corpse is still in the mortuary,” said the grieved man, near tears.