Emeka plans huge fund raising events for Rohingya refugees

Ezeugo revealed a big fund raising campaign, which will include a run covering 1500 kms and a football match involving former world stars.

Former Nigerian World Cupper Emeka Ezeugo, who began his club career with East Bengal in 1986, plans to run in four phases starting on April 21.   -  PTI

Former Nigerian World Cupper Emeka Ezeugo revealed a big fund raising campaign for the aid of the Rohingya refugees, which will include a run covering 1500 kms and a football match involving former world stars.

“Someone inside me told me to go to Asia and help out the people in distress. The call was so overpowering that I could not help but return to the place where I started my professional football career,” Emeka, who began his club career with East Bengal in 1986, said here on Tuesday.

“Where no one has been before is where I am about to go by bringing together the football families of India, Bangladesh, Nigeria, Italy and the World in general to ‘Run for the Aid of Rohingya Refugees,” the Nigerian defender, who played the 1994 World Cup (in USA) for his country, said.

Emeka plans to run in four phases starting on April 21. “I am planning to have the run in four phases. The first phase will be run from Kolkata to Chittagong. The next phases will be Chittagong to Cox Bazaar, Cox bazaar to Dhaka and the finally from Dhaka to Kolkata,” the Nigerian footballer, who currently resides in New York, said.

“Running to the aid of Rohingya refugees is my clear and present occupation,” said Emeka, who sees the event as a unique “sports reality show” that will have the participants as running billboards giving leverage to the “Corporates of India and Bangladesh.”

Emeka is not sure of how the model will be working but says that the charity initiative will gather momentum as he starts his journey. He has appealed to the runners to donate in Rupees or Taka an amount of 1000 each in a show of solidarity. “I will try to bring together the Prime Ministers of India and Bangladesh to donate the fund collected from the charity to the Rohingya refugees,” Emeka said.

“Once the FIFA World Cup in Russia is over, I will try to bring together the Nigerian and Italian teams that played in the 1994 FIFA World Cup to play charity matches in Kolkata and Dhaka,” Emeka said about his next plan adding that he had already paid a part of the players’ appearance money from his own savings.

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