Breaking : Veteran FIFA Graded Referee Festus Okubule Is Dead


One of Nigeria’s celebrated former referee, Festus Bolaji Okubule has died. His death in a Lagos hospital took place at about 5.50pm this Tuesday.

The death occurred after he took ill shortly after his 80th birthday which was quietly marked at his Lagos home on 14 March.

He was the second Nigerian referee to officiate at the Africa Cup of Nations in Egypt, 1986 after the pioneering effort of Sunny Woghiren at the 1974 edition which was also held in Egypt.

Okubule, popularly called ‘Show Boy’ for his dramatic demonstration of actions that led to his calls and whistling, refereed the Senegal 2-0 defeat of Mozambique at the 10 March 1986 Africa Cup of Nations duel at the Cairo International Stadium.

But his first international match was at the World Military Schools’ Competition in Kuwait in 1978, five years after he became an international referee.

He got his FIFA badge in 1974.  in 1983  Okubule became the first Nigerian referee at a FIFA tournament when he was picked for the FIFA Youth Championship (now FIFA U-20 World Cup) in Mexico.


Chris Kehinde Nwandu is the Editor In Chief of CKNNEWS || He is a Law graduate and an Alumnus of Lagos State University, Lead City University Ibadan and Nigerian Institute Of Journalism || With over 2 decades practice in Journalism, PR and Advertising, he is a member of several Professional bodies within and outside Nigeria || Member: Institute Of Chartered Arbitrators ( UK ) || Member : Institute of Chartered Mediators And Conciliation || Member : Nigerian Institute Of Public Relations || Member : Advertising Practitioners Council of Nigeria || Fellow : Institute of Personality Development And Customer Relationship Management || Member and Chairman Board Of Trustees: Guild Of Professional Bloggers of Nigeria

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