The Oyo State Football Association (OYSFA) has been left in
a state of shock following the untimely demise of one of Nigeria’s most distinguished football referees, Rafiu Kazeem Opeyemi. The tragic incident occurred as a result of a fatal accident that took place on Saturday evening in Osu, Ilesha, Osun State.
Late Kazeem, a prominent member of the Nigeria Referees
Association (NRA), the Oyo State Referees Council, and also the chairman of the Ona Ara Referees Society, was returning from a fitness evaluation in Abuja. He was accompanied by four other Nigerian referees. Tragically, while the other referees sustained varying degrees of injuries and are presently undergoing medical treatment, Kazeem lost his life in the accident.
In response to this sorrowful occurrence, HRM Oba James Odeniran, the Chairman of the Oyo State Football Association, expressed profound grief and condolences for the passing that transpired on the previous day (Saturday).
A condolence message issued and signed by Mr. Kehinde Adebayo Ojelowo, the association’s secretary, described Late Rafiu Kazeem Opeyemi as a young man with a promising future ahead. He was recognized for excelling in his vocation and profession, and for having diligently earned the respect of his colleagues and acquaintances both in Oyo state and across Nigeria.
“The news of Kazeem’s passing has left us in a state of deep sorrow. This is a heart-wrenching loss because he was a young individual with a bright future ahead. Without a doubt, he was one of the most dedicated and accomplished football referees in our midst. His dedication to his profession was unwavering, but regrettably, we have lost Kazeem,” the statement lamented.
“We pray that the Almighty will grant him eternal rest and absolution for his sins. Our thoughts are also with those he has left behind, including his immediate family, friends, and associates, as well as his fellow referees, the NRA, and the entire Nigerian football community. May they find the strength to bear this monumental loss,” the statement continued.
Despite this profound loss, the Oyo State Football Association extends their heartfelt sympathies to the family of late Kazeem Opeyemi. Additionally, they wish a swift recovery to Ajadi Odunayo, Oni Ebenezer Segun, and Amos, a fellow association member from Ogun State, who were also involved in the accident.