Home 6 Yours Footbally 6 Dear Deji Tinubu,

Dear Deji Tinubu,

Good night, good bye. However sad your departure may appear, we find great solace in the simple fact that your 90 mins was well spent. Like every good game, we wish you had extra time to spend with us. I write from Jersey Number Twelve​ headquarters.
We know nothing, that’s why we feel terrible as you exit. If only we know you are needed more in a place good people go. We haven’t been there, so we know not. And that’s why everyone you imparted shed tears of loss.
You aren’t lost, how could you?
You played a game. You screamed. The medical team tried to revive you. But you had to go and you left.
Forgive us if we shame you. Forgive us if we behave as humans and if we go to our social media to cry inks and words.
We only do so because we know nothing. We aren’t God. We are but flesh, bones and blood. If only we know. We’d smile and sing your dirge. We’d chant your ode and remember what you did amongst us.
“If not for birds and booze I would’ve played for England”
We’d remember that favorite line of yours.
We would remember that the 52 years you spent on this world was in smiles and apt wisdom.
Like Johnsnow, we know nothing!
I know you see us and want to communicate to us. That it’s okay. That you are in a place of blissful grace and glamour.
All our physical eyes and brains can decipher is how an astute sports administrator, sportscaster and engineer took his last breathe during a five-aside soccer match.
Alas the Nottingham Forest fan slumped and passed away on the pitch. That’s what we report as pressmen.
We were there at the ongoing retreat of members of the Lagos state executive council and permanent secretaries at the Jubilee Chalets, Epe. We were there with our human eyes. And so we saw only what humans should see.
Uncle Jide Idris — the state commissioner for health — was in the stands, he rushed to help. With the help of other doctors on ground. They did their best. But they too, like us, didn’t see what the physical eyes couldn’t see.
They couldn’t see the glorious place you were going. They didn’t see the hand of time. They didn’t know your good time was up.
And so they would continue their bid to revive you and rush you to the General Hospital in Epe.
But the doctors confirmed you are no longer here.
You are gone.
Gone too soon.
Godwin Enakhena, CEO global media and MFM sports director remains ‘devastated’ by the news.
My friend and brother, Edafe Eseoghene, a soccer analyst and Elegbete TV CEO sends his love:
— Now I know what people mean when they say pain made them unable to eat. Nothing really seem to make sense in my head. So Deji Tinubu is gone, just like that? This is unfair. Just so unfair.
Seyi Akinwunmi, chairman, Lagos FA and first vice-president of Nigeria Football Federation sends his love:
— The NFF and the Nigerian football family have lost a great member, friend and supporter.
Amaju Pinnick, NFF president, sends his farewell:
— This is heart-rending… However, we find solace in the fact that Ayodeji Tinubu has gone to rest, and that he left giant footprints in the sands of time.
Kehinde Bamigbetan​ , Lagos state commissioner for information and strategy pays his homage:
 — He brought his passion to his job. He was a gentleman who maintained excellent team spirit. We shall miss him.
You will forever be in our hearts as that great DT, that awesome TV and radio sports analyst, that founder SportsVision, that business partner of Deji Omotoyinbo and Bode Oguntuyi.
Deji, Lagos state grassroots sports say thank you.
NFF says they won’t forget your contribution to the South Africa Cup of Nations success in 2013. They say thank you.
Governor Akinwunmi Ambode says thank you for helping to actualise the hosting of the 2nd CAF Beach Soccer Cup of Nations in the state in December 2016.
Your favorite team Nottingham Forest​ will play for you today at their FA fixture. They appreciate your loyalty.
Many do not know you own a football club, Athletico football club.
Staffers, players and all at Athletico FC say thank you.
If you see your father up there, Kafaru Tinubu. Tell him how you listened to him and refused to become a footballer since he disapproved of you being a professional Footballer​. Let him know you found away to impart the game better.
Your aged mother, Bintu Tinubu, is devastated. Your wife, Yemisi and the kids will miss you. Your younger brother, Wale, the CEO of Oando Plc will manage to be fine.
Lagos miss you. Nigeria will miss you. Africa and the world mourn.
I will never stop writing about this beautiful game. Your impact will never be forgotten.
Your memories lives forever with us.
Good bye, good night.
Yours Footbally,

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About Ediale Kingsley

Ediale Kingsley is the Founding Editor of Jersey Number Twelve and Head of the Trends & Sports desk at National Daily Newspaper. He thinks he is polygamous, married to three wives; Football, Laptop and Internet. When not writing, he is writing or prepping to write. These days he is everywhere talking, filming and showing-up football and films. This National Daily trained journalist went to school to be a graduate in accounting.

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