In a heartbreaking news, the Nigeria Premier Football League (NPFL) community is mourning the loss of Rafiu Kazeem Opeyemi, a dedicated referee, who met a tragic end while returning from a crucial fitness test in Abuja.
The incident has cast a somber shadow over the football fraternity as preparations for the upcoming 2023/2024 Football season were in full swing.
Participating in a rigorous fitness assessment at the renowned Moshood Abiola Stadium in Abuja, Rafiu Kazeem Opeyemi had been gearing up to ensure he was in optimal shape for the demanding season ahead.
Tragically, fate had a different plan. On Saturday, August 19th, his journey took an unthinkable turn along the Osu route in Ilesha, Osun State.
In a fatal accident, he lost his life while making his way back to Oyo State.
The devastating news left many devastated, with heartfelt condolences pouring in from all corners.
Babatunde Olaniyan Akoro, the Executive Chairman of Shooting Stars Sports Club (3SC), alongside the entire management, expressed their deep sorrow and sympathies in a poignant statement.
The loss of Rafiu Kazeem Opeyemi, a respected member of the Nigeria Referees Association (NRA), is deeply felt.
The tragic incident also left several other referees injured. Oni Ebenezer Segun, Ajadi Odunayo, and Amos, all members of the association from Ogun State, were injured in the same accident.
As of now, they are undergoing treatment, and the entire NPFL community is wishing them a swift recovery.
Rafiu Kazeem Opeyemi had been an integral part of the Ona Ara Referees Society within the Oyo State Referees Council, holding the position of chairman.
His untimely passing has left a void that is hard to fill, and his legacy will be remembered and cherished.