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How referee Basit Giwa slumped, died, by NRA

The late referee, Basit Giwa, who slumped and died during a fitness test in Ibadan…at the weekend.

The late referee, Basit Giwa, who slumped and died during a fitness test in Ibadan…at the weekend.

The South/West coordinator of Nigeria Referee Association (NRA), James Odeniran, has explained the circumstances leading to Basit Giwa’s death during the 2015 Football Referee’s Fitness Test held at the Lekan Salami Sports Complex, Adamasingba Ibadan, at the weekend.

Odeniran, while condoling with the family of the deceased, said the NRA did everything humanly possible to
avert the tragedy, adding, however, that Giwa’s death was a predestined occurrence by God.

The retired FIFA referee, who doubles as the Chairman of Oyo State Football Association, said, “We took every precautionary measure before the fitness test was conducted, and that was by ensuring that every participant went through complete medical examination and Basit Giwa was certified fit to participate… he passed his ECG, and blood pressure test very well.

“He passed the fitness test by completing the race within the stipulated time only for his health to developed issues moments after the exercise. He was rushed to the nearby clinic with the standby ambulance.

“It was a few minutes after he was admitted into the emergency ward that he passed on, I pray God give his family, Lagos State Referee Council and the NRA fortitude to bear Irreparable loss.”

The Nationwide League referee was buried according to Islamic rites by his family in Lagos yesterday.

The latest incident brings to question the quality of medical checks conducted on referees in the country.

The Guardian recalls that three years ago, a referee, Osita Nwadiashi, slumped and died during a fitness exercise in Abuja, while in 2011 two others, Olatunde Oyetola of Oyo State Referee Council and Matthew Faloye from Ogun State slumped and died during a Cooper’s test also in Abuja.

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