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FORMER NIGERIA SPORTS CHIEFTAIN, ALEX AKINYELE DIES

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Chief Alex Akinyele, the first person to occupy the post of the Nigeria’s National Sports Commission (NSC) as Executive Chairman, has died in Lagos. he was aged 81.

A Face book post by his son, Constantine Kayode Akinfolarin Akinyele, on Thursday night reads:

“With thanksgiving for his life, I am sad to announce we lost our father and grand father, Chief Alexander Opeyemi Akinyele earlier today after a brief illness. May his soul rest in peace. He will be missed by his children, grand children, family and friends.”

The everlively Akinyele was the 16th person to head Nigeria’s sports ministry when, instead of being designated a sports minister, was made the Executive Chairman of the NSC in 1992.

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Before then, the NSC was always a parastal under the ministy and usually had a board. In addition to being the NSC boss, he had also been the Information Minister and Chairman, National Orientation Movement.

He was the chairman at the launch of the landmark book “Super Eagles…Through the Ages” in May 2010.

A traditional chieftancy holder, he was boss, the Lisa Jigan and Lobosin of Ondo Kingdom. Born on April 24, 1938, he cooncidentally, shared the same birthday with his fellow Ondo man and legal icon, the Late Chief Gani Fawehimi.

Kunle Solaja is the author of landmark books on sports and journalism as well as being a multiple award-winning journalist and editor of long standing. He is easily Nigeria’s foremost soccer diarist and Africa's most capped FIFA World Cup journalist, having attended all FIFA World Cup finals from Italia ’90 to Qatar 2022. He was honoured at the Qatar 2022 World Cup by FIFA and AIPS.

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