The third edition of the annual Nigeria Football Federation-Aiteo Football Awards took the City of Lagos by storm on Monday night, with the country’s First Lady, Aisha Buhari, as well as four-time African Player of the Year, Asisat Oshoala, home-based professional Gift Monday and the Super Falcons’ class of 1999 the star attraction at the glamour event inside the Eko Hotels & Suites, Victoria Island.
Scuttled by the global coronavirus pandemic that has wreaked havoc worldwide since the beginning of year 2020, the third edition of the showpiece event was planned on a smaller scale but blossomed and became magnified as the night wore on with top guns of the Lagos State Sports Commission and FA; NFF partners and sponsors; corporate titans; squad members of the 1999 Super Falcons; squad members of the Women ‘A’ teams of Nigeria and Cameroon and; leading football stakeholders, in the hall.
President of the NFF and FIFA Council Member, Amaju Pinnick, heaped plaudits on Aisha Buhari, in whose name the six-nation invitational tournament which ended on Tuesday in Lagos was held and disclosed that her passion, interest, attention, and commitment to the challenges confronting women, the girl-child and the less privileged in general motivated the Aisha Buhari Cup event.
The First Lady was honored with the award of Best Supporter of Women’s Football.
Silas Nwankwo and Charles Atshimene, who shared the honors of top scorer in the last NPFL season with 19 goals, were joint winners of the Best Performance of the Year (Men; Nigeria-based), while Paul Onuachu emerged Best Performer for the overseas-based crew.
Oshoala, whose Spanish club FC Barcelona won the UEFA Champions League, emerged as the best performer (Women; Overseas-based) while Gift Monday, top scorer in the NWFL season, was crowned best performer on the home front.
Lagos State was honored with Host State of the Year and Edo State was recognized with the Award of Commitment to Women Football Excellence.
Members of the Super Falcons class of 1999 were honoured with 14 of the 20 players present at the event: Nkiru Okosieme, Rita Nwadike, Mercy Akide, Ann Chiejine, Yinka Kudaisi, Marvis Ogun, Maureen Mmadu, Stella Mbachu, Gloria Usieta, Adanna Nwaneri, Florence Iweta, Nkechi Egbe, Judith Chime, and Martha Tarhemba, while deceased Ifeanyi Chiejine was represented by her sister and were all awarded.