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Wednesday, February 8, 2023

‘You’ve made Africa proud’ – Buhari hails Morocco for breaking Africa’s semi-final jinx in World Cup

President Muhammadu Buhari has congratulated the Moroccan World Cup team, the Atlas Lions, and the ruler of the country, King Mohammed the VI on making history by becoming first team from Africa to qualify for World Cup semi-final.

Morocco also has become the fourth African country to ever qualify for the World Cup quarterfinals.

President Buhari, in a statement by his spokesman, Garba Shehu, said Morocco has made the entire continent proud with their grit and dexterity, giving hope that an African team can indeed win, and should win the ongoing global championship in Qatar.

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“President Muhammadu Buhari congratulates the Moroccan World Cup team, the Atlas Lions, and the ruler of the country, King Mohammed the VI, on making history by becoming the fourth team from an African country to ever qualify for the World Cup quarterfinals, and the first to win a place in a semi-final at the FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022.

“President Buhari says Morocco has made the entire continent proud with their grit and dexterity, giving hope that an African team can indeed win, and should win the ongoing global championship in Qatar.

“President Buhari commends the team for their skill and teamwork, noting at the same time that this could not have been achieved without the exemplary role of the Moroccan authorities in putting together a formidable team,” the statement reads.

Earlier, Gov. David Umahi of Ebonyi state also joined millions of football fans to congratulate Morocco for breaking the African jinx of qualifying for the semi-finals of the World Cup.

Umahi, who spoke through the state Commissioner for Youth Development and Sports, Charlse Akpuenika, said that every African should be proud of the moment.

 

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“I want to re-echo the popular saying that what God cannot do does not exist and this is what we have witnessed.

“Africa has waited since the competition started in 1930 for this moment and it is really worthy of praising God,” he said.

The governor congratulated the Moroccan players for their tenacity, noting that they were really committed to succeed.

“The players showed from their first game that they came to the competition to create history and die for their country on the pitch.

“This is a huge lesson for Nigerians in all spheres of life that patriotism and selflessness would make us achieve our set goals,” he said.

He noted that his administration would finish on a high note, especially in the area of sports, to ensure that youths achieved their life ambitions through the sector.

“We would definitely complete the construction of the ultra modern Olympic Stadium in Abakaliki, which would be a sporting model in the country,” he said.

Chike Aribo, former Golden Eaglet Player, described Morocco as the true champions of Africa as it had proved bookmakers wrong with its splendid performances.

“The team defeated Belgium and eliminated Spain and Portugal, all world football super powers.

“The whole of Africa should unite in praying for the team to perform the unthinkable feat of winning the World Cup,” he said.

Mrs Chinyere Okeh, a Teacher and Soccer Buff, urged the players not to be complacent but approach the remaining matches with utmost seriousness.

“The remaining countries in the competition would presently be wary of the Moroccans and would do anything to halt their winning streak,” she said.

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