5th July, 2012
By Gbenro Adeshina / Ibadan
As tributes pour in for the late Samuel Ojebode, the former Nigeria player, who died yesterday, sympathizers have been besieging his residence situated at No 21 Dele Ajayi Street, Iyana Church, Iwo Road, Ibadan.
When P.M.Sports visited the house, it was discovered that the former Super Eagle Coach, Chief Adegboye Onigbinde was among the early callers on the bereaved family. Also, representatives of the Nigeria Football Federation, NFF, members of Oyo State Executive Councils and friends have visited Ojebode’s home to commiserate with his family.
Many of the symphatisers who signed the condolence register, described the late international footballer as a nice, gentle and kind man, who loved children during his life time.
Some neigbours of the deceased player said they would miss him. One of the neigbours, Hakeem, a footballer said: “Baba Ojebode was a good man during his life time. All the footballers in and around his street often gather at his house to celebrate the Christmas and New Year. We will eat and wine with him. That’s one thing we will miss, may his gentle soul rest in perfect peace”.
Chief Onigbinde noted that the nation has just lost another football icon, stressing that the news of his death shocked him.
Onigbinde said he would always remember him for what he contributed to the football industry in Nigeria.
His wife, Mrs Morenikeji Titilayo Ojebode, who was in tears while speaking to P.M.Sports, said she and the family tried their best to save his life, regretting that her love finally died in severe pain.
She however commended the assistance given to the family while the husband was on admission at the UCH.
“What happens now? So, I will start to live alone in this house! We have been staying alone in the house for years since our children left us,” Mrs Ojebode disclosed.
His two children, Sola and Deji described their father as a caring father, and urged his close associates and the government not to abandon them at this trying period.
They disclosed that the family is indebted to some people whom they borrowed money from to take care of their father. “I had to collect money from cooperative society and my mother collected car loan and spent it on our father’s sickness. Life is tough now”.
Sola disclosed that he was his father’s barber stressing,”l barb my father’s hair. The one he carried to heaven, I was the one that barbed it”.
Governor Abiola Ajimobi of Oyo State described the death of the former captain of the defunct ICC Shooting Stars as unfortunate, disheartening and sad.
Ajimobi described the former captain of the ICC Shooting Stars as a star player whose contributions to the development of soccer in Nigeria could not be quantified.
“Ojebode served not only Oyo State but also the country meritoriously. It was during his tenure as captain of ICC that we won the African Winners Cup which was a great achievement,” he remarked.