Enugu State Football Association chairman Chidi Ofor Okenwa has died at the age of 50.
The Nigeria Football Federation said in a statement that Okenwa was diagnosed with Leukaemia and passed away early on Tuesday morning.
NFF president Amaju Melvin Pinnick in a glowing tribute to Okenwa who was a member of the NFF Executive Committee described his demise as a terrible blow.
“This is a huge shock. Each and everyone of us on the NFF Board is in absolute grief. Chidi (Okenwa) was a loyal soldier of Nigeria Football and was a leading member of our intellectual wing. This is a terrible blow,” Pinnick said.
“He was one man you can always rely on to give candid advice. We bounced ideas off him regularly and picked his brain on many issues because of his wide knowledge and decades of experience in football administration. We will sorely miss him.”
NFF spokesperson Ademola Olajire described Okenwa as brilliant, humble, eloquent, witty, thorough and committed to the development of Nigeria Football at all levels.
Olajire said Okenwa evinced capacity, zeal and fervour, and gave his all for the good ending of any project or assignment in which he found himself.
The remains of the late Chidi Ofo Okenwa has been deposited in a mortuary in the city of Enugu and the NFF is in contact with his family with regards to a decision on the date of the final burial rites the statement added.
There is no indication that his death is linked to coronavirus complications.
Okenwa was an astute football administrator who also served as chairman of Nigeria’s second-tier Nigeria National League (NNL).