The First Lady, Mrs Aisha Buhari, says the objective of the ongoing Aisha Buhari Invitational Women’s football tournament was to promote football among women and girl-child for greater opportunities ahead.
Mrs Buhari said this at a reception organised by businessman Aliko Dangote, in honour of the visiting FIFA President, Gianni Infantino, in Lagos.
A statement made available to newsmen in Lagos by her Director, Information, Mr Suleiman Haruna, said the first lady was represented by the Wife of Lagos State Governor, Mrs Ibijoke Sanwo-Olu.
Mrs Buhari thanked the FIFA President for creating more chances for women’s participation in football.
”Our objective for this tournament, Mr Infantino, is to use the event to promote women football and highlight its critical linkage to women development and the challenges facing women and girl-child, not only in Nigeria but on the African continent,” she said.
She said the aim was to draw the attention of policy-makers on the urgency and the need to address the facing growth and development of the girl-child on the African continent.
”Mr Infantino, we thank you for increasing the number of teams at the FIFA Women’s World Cup to 32 – the same as the men’s tournament – which shows your good heart and recognition of the fact that the girl-child can also do what the boy-child can do.
”You have proven to be a gender-sensitive person and an individual with a great sense of balance through the appointment of a great African, Mrs Fatma Samoura, as the Secretary-General of FIFA.
”The first woman to occupy the coveted seat since FIFA was founded in the year 1904,” she noted.
Mrs Buhari therefore called on stakeholders to support women’s football and girl-child education.
”Being a strong advocate for girl-child education, I insist that the girl-child must have good opportunity to play the game of football not only for passion but to get opportunities for economic emancipation,” she said.