thinking Tunde1Thursday 8 March 2018 will live long in my memory as a pivotal day in the history of African football - as it concerns me - Ayotunde Adelakun.

 

It was a day that I came to the unfortunate conclusion that as a race, we have been seen as backward by the outside world. We have also clamoured to come out of that space and repair ourselves from within so that we can resist, rebel and fight the phenomenon of ‘backward africa’ that spreads across the outside world.

But on this day, 8 March 2018, I found out that we, within ourselves, have given ourselves the ‘backward’ tag and the end is not in sight as far as that goes.

African football thrives on the natural talent that exists amongst our youth. We are a beauty to watch on the field. Skilful, physical, pacy and athletic - all come to mind when talking about African football.

Those are the main actors - the players, the legends, the heroes.

Organisation-wise, we are trying to get it right. FIFA as the governing body of the game worldwide has helped where it can. CAF as the organising authority in Africa is also stepping up to the plate, trying to deliver the continent from the doldrums of obscurity that belies the talent that we have.

But the people? Our people? Our race. Our people. Where is brotherhood? Where is friendship? Where is loyalty? Where is openness? Where is the unity of purpose? And what do we gain by pulling a fellow human down?

My experience was not a football experience. But where it concerns people, including myself, that are being looked up to, to govern the game, I have to ask - where is this positive future that we always write about, that is awaiting Africa?

I’m afraid I can’t see it. Yet. And for that reason, on Thursday 8 March, I shed a tear.