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Thanks Again Falcons

By Ikeddy Isiguzo
THERE is a sense in which we must learn to extend our gratitude to the Falcons. Their victory in South Africa is a statement on commitment and passion.

It is important these points are not missed in the certain celebration of the victory.
We often get too distracted by issues around sports that when there are victories we find no time to examine their implications, it is especially at that point that we lose the future, we dim it, and we finally forget it.

The Falcons need all the help that they can get to make a difference at the FIFA Women’s World Cup next year in Germany .

We are at a stage that we must do something profound about the performance of the Falcons on the world stage. It is no longer enough to be African champions or play at the World Cup. We have done that for 19 years and we do not have much to show for it.

A major part of the celebration is to lay the foundations for an improved team that will do Nigeria proud. The progression of the women’s teams is impressive, moreso at the age grade levels, but it has to be deepened to see that the gains of these teams are consolidated into the roadmap for the success that we want.

Nigerians remain high in their expectations that the Falcons will do well. I even think that the successes of the Falcons may be the ginger that the Eagles need to improve on their own records.

These are the important perspectives that we must draw from this victory.

If You Are Adamu, Odegbami
AT the heat of the allegations of impropriety against FIFA Executive Committee member Dr. Amos Adamu, I received this mail which truly shows how fraudsters can tap into current issues in the execution of their deeds. Dated 4 November 2010, the message was straight to the point, drawing from all the elements that anyone who has been stranded should know.

Sorry I did not inform you I will be travelling to UK  from Zürich. I am presently in London now and i need your urgent help. I am stranded here in a hotel because I misplaced my briefcase in a taxi cab.

I will like you to assist me urgently with a loan of £3,600 (three thousand six hundred great British pounds sterling) to sort-out my hotel bills and get myself back home.

Let me know if you can be of help right now. do let me know if you can be of any help so I can send you the information on how to send the money to me. Please is very confidential do not discuss it with any body.

I will reimburse you at my return.
Regards, Dr Amos
A text message to Dr. Adamu alerting him about the fraud that was going on in his name elicited no response  the man was obviously tied up with more important things.

Then on 14 November 2010, a Sunday, showing no day is immune to the activities of fraudsters, I got this one purported from Segun Odegbami.

How are you doing? Hope all is well with you and I pray this email finds you in good health. I am sorry that I did not tell you about me leaving for this Football Conference here in Madrid Spain .

I really hate to ask you but I need favour from you because I misplaced my wallet on my way to the hotel where my money and other valuable things were kept. I really need a loan urgently. I will be needing the sum of 4,500 Euro to sort-out my hotel bills and get myself back home.

I will appreciate whatever you can afford to help me with; I will pay you back as soon as I return. Kindly let me know if you can be of help so that I can send you the details to use when sending the money through Western Union Money Transfer.
Your help will be greatly appreciated.
Segun Odegbami

I know that Chief Odegbami should know me well enough to suspect I would be unable to lend even a good friend like him because he misplaced his wallet. I called him immediately and he issued two disclaimers to his friends, families and associates. One of them is published below.

My dear friend
I am sending this again just in case you did not receive my first mail. You may have received a mail purportedly sent by me from Madrid requesting for funds for some stupid purpose. It is the handwork of 419ers. Kindly disregard the mail. I am nowhere near Madrid , nor do I need any funds for anything.  My box must have been hacked. I am deeply shocked.
Big Seg

The lesson in this is that many of us are at risk of being victims of these fraudsters. When next you get a letter like these, your first instinct is to call the supposed sender to confirm. Do not send any money to anyone under these circumstances.
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