WINDSOR JOHN Paul leaves for Nigeria tonight as the FIFA General Co-ordinator for the FIFA U-17 World Cup. It is not suprising that FIFA has appointed Windsor to be based in Abuja, which will host the finals as well.
Nigeria's capital, Abuja enjoys a rare blend of natural and modern monuments uncommon in the continent's sub region. Rich in tourism and infrastructure, Abuja has become a safe haven for foreign tourists and expatriates.
Abuja replaced Lagos as Nigeria's federal capital on 12 December 1991 and is a uniquely planned city. The 2006 census put the population of the territory at 778,567. Abuja's geography is defined by Aso Rock, with the Presidential complex, National Assembly, Supreme Court and much of the town extending to south of the monolith. ‘ASO' means ‘victorious', just as ‘Asokoro' means ‘victorious people'.
In addition to being a major governmental centre, Abuja is the headquarters of the Economic Community of West Africa States, ECOWAS; it also house the regional headquarters of OPEC. As a result, Abuja and the surrounding area have experienced a huge population growth.
The national Mosque and national Christian centre are located opposite each other on either side of independence Avenue.
Abuja will host Group A matches which will see Nigeria, Germany, Honduras, Argentina vying for two spots while Group B match between Switzerland and Brazil will also be held there.
Windsor who resigned as the FIFA Development Officer last month is expected to be the man in charge at the 2010 FIFA World Cup in South Africa. Malaysia at this point in time, with the current system will not be able to be there, but at least a Kedah born, from a simple community is keeping the Malaysian flag flying in Abuja.
The other Malaysian that will be involved in Nigeria, is our reknown referree Sukhddin Salleh, who represents the Asian Zone. Sukhddin who is among the FIFA elite referees might see action in South Africa.
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