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Soccer Tragedies In Nigeria: Insurance As Best Option Than Lamentations

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By TOPE ADARAMOLA, Lagos

Since the beginning of this year, a gale of tragedies had hit the re-evolving Nigerian Soccer league, starting with the alleged gruesome killing of the young and talented player of Remo Stars, Tiamiyu Kazeem, in Ogun State by exuberant operatives of SARS.

While still recovering from the shock of the tragedy, the local league was again hit by the demise of two players, one of them a former National team player, Ifeayi George and Emmanuel Ogbu who both died in ghastly road accident in Edo State on their way to Lagos to meet their families.

Few days apart, news broke again that Dayo Ojo, two times African Champion Enyimba player was kidnapped in Akure and still with the abductors till now.

Lest I forget, a player of Nassarawa United, Chieme Martins slumped and gave up the ghost in the field of play, depicting the parlous state of sports heath facilities in the country. We pray God to put an end to this gale of calamities.

Although as usual, there had been lamentations and emotionalizing at the aftermath of these sad occurrences, we still seem to be missing the point that Insurance remains the best succor when the unfortunate happens.

For those that have died, we cannot bring them back to life, yet insurance can reduce the aftermath impact of the pain and devastation on their dependents.

The onus should be on our local league owners and handlers that the best gift they could give these young people is to build insurance into their remuneration, in order to take care of eventualities when it occurs to them. Take for instance, the depth of pain to their dependents. Some of the deceased had parents, wives and children whose future would naturally be affected negatively with the sad occurrences.

Many parents and family members would have been hopeful that someday luck would shine on their own to hit the gold by playing in big time clubs in Europe and become “money machines” as their contemporaries there; yet these hopes have been dashed.

Agreed that no amount could be enough to monetize the value of life, but monetary succor would at least provide a momentary succor and this comes through insurance. There is a saying that “whatever is what having is worth insuring”, and that:”you cannot value what you have until you lose it”! Though many may be confused about how to go about engaging insurance, the advice I will give is that you go through Registered Insurance Brokers who are the professional insurance intermediaries that are equipped to advise clients on the best policies to take and how to pay the most economical premiums.

They also help clients to pursue their claims promptly when a claim arises. There is saying that all you need to be home and dry with insurance is just to lay hold on a Registered Insurance Broker. Let it sink down in our minds and hearts that no one is insulated from calamities, but we must all be circumspect to protect our lives and property when the unexpected occurs.

I hope our sports administrators, especially the vibrant Hon Minister of Sports, Sunday Dare would bring this as an addition to his creative initiatives in the sports commission by mandating all club owners who want to play in the nation’s league to produce insurance certificates of their footballers before they are admitted into the contest.

This will surely reduce the misery of the footballers, make the league more attractive and at the other end grow the insurance industry, positioning it to contribute better to the nation’s GDP.

Anything short of this would make the usual lamentation after the loss of precious life or fatal injury to any of our local footballers and sportspeople like a smokescreen and shutting of our gates after the horse has bolted away!

-Tope Adaramola is a PR Professional

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