The Minister of Youth and Sports Development, Sunday Dare, has described the death of former Super Eagles defender, Ajibade Babalade, as a huge loss, not only to his family, but also to the entire Nigerian football fraternity.
The minister said this in a condolence message signed by his Special Adviser (Media), Mr John Joshua-Akanji, on Sunday in Abuja.
He said that he was shocked and saddened by the news of the death of the former 3SC defender.
“I received with shock and sadness in my heart the news of the death of one of Nigeria’s most hardworking and dedicated players, Ajibade Babalade, who served the country and his profession well.
“He played such a prominent role in his active playing days.
“He was a nightmare to attackers and a Trojan in the heart of the Eagles defence. So sad that he died shortly after the death of another national team player.
“My thoughts and prayers are with his family and the entire football family. May God grant him eternal peace and console his family,” Dare said.
Kunde, as he was popularly called in his playing days, died on Friday at a hospital after a brief illness.
He was a member of the bronze-winning Super Eagles team at the 1992 Nations Cup in Senegal.
Babalade played for 3SC FC of Ibadan, Stationery Stores FC of Lagos, Iwuayanwu Nationale FC of Owerri, Africa Sports of Cote d’ Ivoire, Strum Graz of Austria, among other clubs.