Former Nigeria captain Austin Jay-Jay Okocha has launched a foundation to give back to the society.
Tagged Jay-Jay Okocha Foundation, the new NGO is founded to promote education, peace and unity in Nigeria.
Speaking at the official launch in Lagos on Tuesday, the former Bolton Wonderers captain said part of the focus of the foundation is getting as many kids in Nigeria back to school through football.
“We also aim at creating jobs by engaging other ex- international and other Nigerians. We as well plan to create zonal training for youth from the age of 13 and above.” Okocha said.
Okocha, who will be running the foundation alongside his elder brother Emmanuel, will get funds from auctioning some of their proceeds gotten from the game of football over the years.
According to I-naira CEO Hilary Nwaukor, the auctioning of Okocha’s football items, like boots and jerseys will be carried out by top Nigerian company I-naira.com after which part of the proceed will be channeled to Jay-Jay Okocha Foundation.
The foundation is partnering with Enugu and Ebonyi state governments and are increasing the number.
In 1990, Okocha joined Enugu Rangers. In his time at the club he produced many spectacular displays including one where he rounded off and scored a goal, against experienced Nigerian goalkeeper William Okpara in a match against BCC Lions.
Later that year, he went on holiday to West Germany, the country that had just won the 1990 FIFA World Cup, so he could watch German league football. His friend Binebi Numa was playing in the Third Division for Borussia Neunkirchen, and one morning Okocha accompanied Numa to training, where he asked to join in. The Neunkirchen coach was impressed with Okocha’s skills and invited him back the next day before offering him a contract.
A year later, he joined 1. FC Saarbrücken, but stayed only a few months with the 2. Bundesliga side before a move to the 1. Bundesliga with Eintracht Frankfurt.
He later played for Fernabahce, Paris St-Germain, Bolton Wonderers and Hull City.