Nigerian legend and former Super Eagles skipper Jay-Jay Okocha today launched the Jay-Jay Okocha Foundation, which aims to use football as a vehicle for “education, peace and unity”.
The foundation’s “primary objective” is to “use football to raise awareness on the strategic importance of Education, Peace and Unity for the economic growth of Nigeria”.
Below is a press release from the foundation:
On the 5th of July 2016, two brothers and former Nigerian National Football players unveiled a charity organisation (JAY-JAY OKOCHA FOUNDATION) at a world press conference held at i-naira.com digital hub in Ikoyi.
The primary objective of the foundation is to use football to raise awareness on the strategic importance of Education, Peace and Unity for the economic growth of Nigeria. As a non-profit organisation, Jay-Jay Okocha Foundation will be focused on (but not limited to the following):
•Raising finance through sales and auctioning of football memorabilia especially those belonging to the founders (Jay-Jay Okocha) for charitable causes.
•Raising finance through the organisation of Testimonial Matches that will attract big ticket sponsorship and donors to the cause of the foundation.
•Raising finance through outright solicitation of support from the general public.
•Using the game of football as a means of contact and collaboration with communities that shelter acutely deprived children and youths in Nigeria and elsewhere.
•Assisting vulnerable people around the world access minimum opportunities that is required to motivate people to build an independent, dignified life for themselves
Just as these creative footballers entertained Nigerians during their active days on the pitch, they have brought a fresh breath on how to raise ethical funding for charity by appointing a professional auctioning company (i-naira Integrated Resources Ltd – www.i-naira.com) to handle its needs for funding raising through auction by means of organising events as well as show casing items donated to the foundation on their auction website for bidding.
i-naira.com is a value bargain platform designed and implemented by Nigerians to be the first of many as regards to meeting expectations of consumers. The company began a pre-launch marketing campaign since the 7th of February geared towards building a robust customer base for the launch of its auctioning product (iNairaBid)by the 1st of August 2016. According to available records, it is verifiable fact that this will be the first technologically driven auctioning platform out Nigeria that is positioned to compete on a global scale.
Emmanuel Okocha is the elder brother of Austin Okocha who was originally known as Jay-Jay Okocha while playing for Enugu Rangers and the Nigerian National Team. His younger brother Austin Okocha would later on fit into his shoes due to early retirement from active football due to injuries that limited his ability to continue in active play. He will be remembered for his role during the 1990 African Cup of Nations.
Austin Okocha who took over the name tag Jay-Jay Okocha is regarded as the best Nigerian player of his generation and one of the greatest African players of all time, Okocha was known for his confidence, technique, creativity, and dribbling skills, as well as his use of feints, in particular the step over technique. He started his career at Enugu Rangers just as his elder brother and very quickly enjoyed the respect accorded to his brother as Jay-Jay Okocha. This is a cultural synonym in the south east region where a younger brother who reminds the society of his elderly sibling are accorded same respect a cognizance hence the name Jay-Jay Okocha.
He retired from active playing in 2008.
His career spanned through the 80s over into the millennium where he played for Enugu Rangers junior side and would later play for the Nigerian National team between 1993 -2006. He joined Borussia Neunkirchen in a professional capacity in 1990 and this singular move, showcased his talent to the world and will later play for (but not limited to): Fintracht Fankfurt 992-1996, Feberbache 1996-1998, Paris Saint-Germain, 1998 – 2002, Bolton Wanderers 2002 – 2006, Qatar SC 2006- 2007 as well as Hull City 2007-2008 scoring over 84 goals within the period.
He has received many awards and medals in the course of his career which include but not limited to:
•the inaugural BBC African Footballer of the Year and the successive one, becoming the only player to retain the award and win it more than once.
•In 2004 he was listed in football legend Pelé’s FIFA 100 (a list of the greatest 125 living players of all time).
•In 2007 he was voted number 12 on the greatest African footballers of the past 50 years list, on a poll conducted by CAF to coincide with their 50th anniversary.
•1995, 1997, 2000, 2002, 2003, 2004, 2005 Nigerian footballer of the year
•1996 Nigerian footballer of the year runner up
•1998 African Footballer of the Year runner up
•1998 FIFA World Cup All-Star Team (Reserve)
•2003, 2004 BBC African Footballer of the Year
•April 2003 Goal of the Month (England)
•November 2003 Premier League Player of the Month
•2005 Bolton Wanderers footballer of the year
These brothers impacted the lives of many through the game of football and they are once again set to take the stage to carter the most vulnerable in our society. Accordingly, the foundation will actively work at reaching out to talents across the six geo-political regions in Nigeria. They will actively support the educational needs of vulnerable people in our society as well as nurture football talents across board. These young talented footballers will participate in an annual Okocha Football for UNITY & PEACE events that will start at the regional level until the quarter finals when successful teams will compete at the national level in order for a winning team to emerge. This has never been proposed before but designed by the coordinating team to impact all states and regions in the country. Beyond the winners, all participating young Nigerians will be a beneficiary of the helping hands of Jay-Jay Okocha Foundation. God bless the Federal Republic of Nigeria.