Nigeria State Ministry of Health has issued a crucial health advisory to all residents ahead of African Cup of Nations (AFCON) 2023 final match between Nigeria’s Super Eagles and the Elephants of Cote d’Ivoire.
This advisory comes following the tragic incidents that occurred during the semifinal match between Nigeria and South Africa, where at least five Nigerians lost their lives while watching the intense game.
According to reports, the fatalities occurred towards the end of the game after South Africa was awarded a penalty kick against Nigeria, while another incident occurred when the match got to penalty shoot-outs.
The Lagos State Commissioner for Health, Prof. Akin Abayomi, emphasized the importance of prioritizing health and well-being, especially during events like football matches that can evoke intense emotions.
Among the deceased were individuals from various walks of life, including a serving member of the National Youths Service Corps (NYSC), a former member of the House of Representatives, Dr Cairo Ojougboh and deputy bursar of Kwara State University (KWASU), Alhaji Ayuba Abdullahi.
Nigeria Issues Directives After Fans’ Death
The advisory includes practical tips to help citizens stay safe while enjoying the AFCON final and other high-energy activities.
“Stay hydrated and nourished, avoid crowded and poorly ventilated hot environments, and excessive consumption of alcohol.” read the statement.
The citizens were further advised on consuming nutritious foods to sustain energy levels, especially during prolonged periods of sitting and watching the game.
Among other directives issued were taking regular breaks, sitting in a good posture, staying calm and relaxed and always being prepared for emergencies by contacting the Lagos Emergency Medical Team, LASAMBUS, at 767 or 112 toll-free lines in case of a medical emergencies.
AFCON Final Match
After a month of competition, the most thrilling AFCON in recent memory has thrown up a fascinating heavyweight final showdown between two West African footballing powerhouses.
The match starts at 2000 GMT at the Ebimpe Olympic Stadium on the outskirts of Abidjan, Ivory Coast’s economic capital, the venue where Nigeria defeated the tournament hosts 1-0 during the group stage.
The Elephants are the first host nation to make it to the final since 2006, when Egypt defeated the Ivorians on penalties in Cairo to take the trophy.
During the AFCON 2023, the hosts lost their three group games 4-0 to Equatorial Guinea and reached the knockouts as the fourth-best third-placed team.
Further, the elephants eliminated reigning champions Senegal in a penalty shootout to book their place in the AFCON quarterfinals following a 1-1 draw after extra time in Yamoussoukro.
They later won 2-1 against Mali and thrashed DR Congo with a 1-0 victory to reach the semi-finals.
Nigeria was in Group A of this year’s AFCON alongside Equatorial Guinea, Guinea-Bissau, and hosts Côte d’Ivoire.
They drew 1-1 with Equatorial Guinea in their opener with African Footballer of the Year Osimhen scoring seconds after Ivan Salvador put the underdogs in front.
The Super Eagles advanced to the knockout rounds after a 1-0 win over Guinea-Bissau that saw an own goal from Opa Sangante.
Nevertheless, Nigeria continued their winning run defeating Cameroon 2-0 to go through to the quarterfinals where they met Angola, notching a 1-0 win to advance to the semis.
The Super Eagles emerged the winner in the semifinal match with 4-2 shootout penalty, securing their spot in the final against tournament hosts Ivory Coast.