Solomon Dalung, Nigeria’s minister of sports, has assured players and officials of the team that they will be given all that is due to them, this is after the refund of the money paid by Nigerian international, John Obi Mikel to settle hotel bills for some official.
Vanguard reports that the sport ministry had earlier refunded $4,600 to the team captain, Mikel, which he paid for the team in São Paulo on their way to Salvador.
Addressing the players after their 2-0 victory over Denmark on Saturday, August 13, 2016, Dalung, who was represented by the permanent secretary in the ministry, Chinyeaka Ohaa, said, “I am happy to be a Nigerian, because in spite of all the challenges, you have taken the world by storm you have by your performance, given happiness to more than 160 million Nigerians.”
“Football is the biggest unifying factor in Nigeria today. From Mr. President to the average Nigerian you have made everyone proud today,” Mr. Dalung is quoted as saying.
“I am humbled by your efforts, your commitment, your patriotism. I want to assure you that your sacrifices will not be in vain. Aside whatever the NFF have for you, we will as much as possible, make you happy, if only you will be patient with us. Today, with your performance, I am convinced that you will get that gold.”
Responding to the minister’s remarks, the Dream Team IV captain, Mikel Obi said that the team appreciated the “fatherly support” of the minister and also made an appeal for more “motivation”.
“We want to thank you for your fatherly support. In truth, there have been a lot of challenges, but every time we go onto the field, we forget about everything and make sure our fatherland comes first,” Mikel Obi said.
“We have done that so far and we will continue to do that, but we need more motivation.”