There is this rumour making the rounds on social media, and now on Vanguard newspaper that the late Amodu Shaibu was being owed 17 months salary arrears and this may have somehow contributed to his unfortunate death. Ordinarily I would really not want to comment on this issue because of my relationship with Amodu while he lived, but I cannot continue to remain silent while people make careless statements about an issue they know nothing about.
The fact is that Amodu Shaibu was engaged in a youth sports programme with the Edo State government and for reasons which I must first confirm, the programme was stopped sometime in June 2015 by the Edo state government. In September 2015, Coach Amodu Shaibu wrote a letter to the Edo state government officially disengaging himself from from the programme (services of the government). On Thursday June 9th 2016, Amodu Shaibu came to the Government House Benin city in his usual jovial, charming mood and submitted a letter to the Secretary to the State Government. In the letter, he stated that between June 2015 when the government stopped the programme and September 2015 when he officially disengaged from the programme, he was being owed 4 months salary arrears. He therefore APPEALED that he should be paid the outstanding 4 months salary and an official letter should be issued to him accepting his disengagement from the programme ( Services of the Edo state government). On Saturday 11th June 2016, we were rudely awoken to the sad news that Coach Amodu Shaibu had passed on peacefully during the night. The implication is that the letter which he submitted to the SSG on the 9th of June will certainly not have reached the governor’s table within one working day before his death. So the governor is not even aware that Coach Amodu Shaibu made any pending request before his death. Now some persons may want to ask how I know so much about the case. The answer is simple, I know so much because I was privy to Amodu’s visit to Government House on Thursday and the facts of his request from government. I was also present at the Stella Obasanjo Hospital Mortuary premises in Benin City yesterday morning when his cousin, one Ankari Afegbua was giving an emotional but uninformed interview to pressmen about Amodu being owed by Edo state government. Of course there was no need to counter his erroneous claims when we were more concerned about how to convey the corpse of our big brother to the village for burial. In all these, one thing remain constant. Before his death, Amodu Shaibu never ceased to tell anyone who cared to listen, how grateful he was to Governor Adams Oshiomhole for giving him a soft landing through the engagement in the Youth sports programme, after he was humiliated in 2010 when he qualified our national team for the World Cup but was dumped unceremoniously. This is a discussion for another day.