By Tunde Odesola
(Published in The PUNCH, on Monday, December 26, 2022)
When Frenchman Jules Rimet became FIFA President in 1921, his mission was to wean football off the dominance of the Olympic Games, and project it as the most popular sport, unifying people from all walks of life.
Rimet’s mission was no mean task considering the fact that the Olympics dates back to 776 BC – about 3,000 years ago, when the games were held in Olympia, Greece, every four years, before transmuting into the modern Olympic Games, first held on April 6, 1896.
The wrongly-named first World Cup hosted by Uruguay in 1930 witnessed only 13 countries; seven from South America, four from Europe and two from North America participating, excluding the whole of Africa and Asia.
Christened the Jules Rimet trophy, the first ‘World Cup’ was an honour done to the name of the visionary third FIFA president, Rimet, who spent 33 years in the saddle.
The year 1966 was a lost-and-found year for the World Cup. It was stolen at a stamp exhibition in Westminster Central Hall, London, but was retrieved after seven days by a resident’s dog named Pickles, who found it wrapped in newspaper and hidden in a hedge in south London. England, later in the year, went ahead to win the World Cup for the first and only time on home soil.
It beats the imagination how the suspected mastermind of the heist, after beating the two guards on duty sneakily, could leave behind the stamp collection worth £3 million and cart away the Jules Rimet trophy valued at just £3, 000.
After winning it for the third time in 1970, Brazil had the trophy for keeps. So, as the 1974 edition approached, FIFA’s call for a new trophy was won by Italian sculptor, Silvio Gazzaniga, in 1972, with a masterpiece of a design that comprises two victorious footballers holding aloft a symbolic sphere, showcasing football as a vehicle of universal harmony, triumph, accomplishment, simplicity, freedom, commitment and peace.
Gazzaniga, it was, who designed the UEFA Cup trophy (1972), UEFA Super Cup trophy (1973), Baseball World Cup (2001), Bobsleigh and Volleyball World Cup trophies, among many medals for basketball, swimming and skiing. The Milan-born Gazzaniga also designed a number of coins.
In December 1983, the Jules Rimet trophy went on a journey of no return as it was stolen inside a cabinet with bulletproof glass in the Brazilian Football Confederation building in Rio de Janeiro by the trio of a banker, an ex-police officer and a decorator, incapacitating the guard on duty.
Jules Rimet was never recovered! Graciously, FIFA presented a replica of the trophy to the Brazilian Football Confederation in 1984.
Due to safety worries, winners of the World Cup, from 2006, were not allowed to go home with the real trophy but could only have a feel of it during its official presentation after the final match. A replica of the trophy is nowadays presented to the winning team to take home after the closing ceremony.
By 2038 when the spaces for inscribing the names of winning countries at the base of the trophy are filled up, a new trophy will replace the current one.
Myth, mystique; Pele. One of the myths that hoisted Brazilian football legend, Edson Arantes do Nascimento, aka Pele, on the throne of global football was his acclaimed record which says that he scored 1, 281 goals in 1, 363 games. This is true and false: Half-truth.
An article by ESPN, “Has Messi overtaken Pele’s career goals record?,” quoted record keepers and media outlets saying almost half of Pele’s goal haul was scored in friendlies and tour matches.
Specifically, the article says, “The general consensus among most record-keepers and media outlets, including ESPN’s own Stats & Information Group, is that Pele scored 757 official first-class goals during his career.
“He scored 643 goals for Santos in state and national championships, the Copa Libertadores (South America’s version of the Champions League) and the Intercontinental Cup (a precursor to the FIFA Club World Cup).
“He then scored 37 goals in the old North American Soccer League during his three years at New York Cosmos. All the while, he was busy scoring 77 goals for Brazil in qualifiers and finals of the World Cup, the Copa America and international friendlies.”
However, ESPN says Rec.Sport.Soccer Statistics Foundation, a comprehensive online database of historical soccer statistics, has a different tally, listing his goal haul as 775, including four goals he scored for a ‘military team’ and 12 goals he scored for a ‘Sao Paulo’ selection team – in unofficial capacity, stressing the discrepancy in his tally.
Also disproving the claim of Pele’s over 1,000 goals, an online sports media, GOAL, quotes FIFA’s official website which says that, “Pele scored 1,281 goals in 1,363 games,” adding that, “This figure includes data from a significant number of unofficial matches such as friendly tours with Santos and the New York Cosmos.
“The bulk of Pele’s goals were scored for Santos, where he spent the majority of his career. He scored 643 goals for Santos in 656 competitive appearances. He netted 64 strikes in 107 games for New York Cosmos.”
In an interview with ESPN, Santos club historian, Odir Cunha, said, “Pele scored 1,091 goals for Santos and 1,282 in his entire career. Of these, 448 were scored in what would be considered friendlies and international friendly tournaments.” Many analysts, including Emilo Castano, put the friendly goals Pele scored in his 1,281 goal tally at over 526.
Numerous credible international news media faulted Pele’s controversial goal haul, describing it as false and aimed at misleading the footballing world into believing that he is the Greatest Of All Time. But there can only be ONE GOAT.
Under Rimet, FIFA needed a poster boy for football whose fame had grown in leaps and bounds. And Pele fitted the bill – young, strong, agile, prolific – the goal of Rimet to make football a potent force in conquering poverty, fostering unity, promoting self-actualisation, harmony and encouraging diversity was achieved when Pele came on stage.
As record keeping was not accurate in sports at the time, little attention was paid to Pele’s contentious goal tally largely because his teammates like Garrincha, who was Brazil’s highest goal scorer at the 1962 World Cup (four goals), when Pele scored only one goal, and Jairzinho – seven goals in the 1970 edition when Pele scored four, were contented with just playing football and not bickering over goals scored.
Gerson, the playmaker of the 1970 team, said, “Now the interesting thing is this, as incredible as it might seem, I prefer a thousand times over to make the pass, rather than to score the goal. For me this was the glory because this is what I was trained for.”
Pele played in four World Cups, won three but participated fully in two editions as he was injured in the second group game against Czechoslovakia in the 1962 edition, making him sit out the remaining matches while his teammates went on to win the trophy.
In fairness, Pele was also injured in the 1966 World Cup but he wasn’t the highest goal scorer in the 1958 and 1970 editions when he was fully fit, putting a question mark to his claim of being the greatest finisher.
Aside from being the youngest player of the 1958 World Cup, Pele has no individual award to his name in the four World Cups he featured in for Brazil. This is a telling testimony to the fact that he has been largely overrated.
Ronaldo de Lima, aka The Phenomenon, has a better World Cup goal record than Pele. Ronaldo was in four World Cups (1994, 1998, 2002 and 2006), but played in just three as he warmed the bench all through the 1994 edition, amassing 15 goals to Pele’s 12.
To be continued
Facebook: @tunde odesola
IGP tenure: Police affairs minister goofed, says rights group
Rights and Freedom Advocates (RIFA) has faulted Minister of Police Affairs, Muhammad Maigari Dingyadi, for saying the current Inspector General of Police (IGP), Usman Alkali Baba, would not be retiring midway into the general elections.
The IGP was due to retire on March 1 this year. But the minister was quoted last Wednesday after leaving the Federal Executive Council (FEC) meeting that President Muhammadu Buhari had extended Baba’s tenure as IGP, citing Nigeria Police Act 2020 to indicate the current IGP would serve four-year tenure.
But RIFA, in a statement signed by its president, Luqman Soliu, said it viewed the minister’s position as inconsistent with the laws of the land.
It argued that the minister’s position ran contrary to the law and that the quoted Act was being misinterpreted, adding the tenure elongation could create a problem in the police force.
The statement read in part, “Usman Alkali Baba record at Nigeria Police Force showed his date of birth as March 1, 1963 while he enlisted into Nigeria Police Force on March 15, 1988 as Assistant Superintendent of Police and is expected to bow out of active service on March 1, 2023 when he would clock 60 years. Similarly, the IGP by March 15,2023 would clock 35 years in service. As a result, his post would be vacant effective March 1, 2023.
“However, the law is explicit on the tenure of any IGP and those qualified to be IGP.
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“The minister was said to be relying on Nigeria Police Act, 2020 Section 7(3) and (6) to arrive at his position.
“Also, the minister was further quoted to have said the IGP was appointed by the President on April 6,2021 but his appointment confirmed in June 2021 by the Nigeria Police Council in line with the laws of the land and so must spend four (4) years.
“Even though the tenure of the IGP has witnessed improved compliance with the laws of Nigeria and sanctioning/discipline of some errant police officers mostly reported by the media, that cannot warrant elongating his tenure beyond the constitutionally guaranteed period.
“On the issue of the IGP, the 1999 Constitution (as amended) is very clear on the appointment and removal of IGP when it states in section 215 (1) (a) that:“An Inspector-General of Police who, subject to section 216 (2) of this Constitution shall be appointed by the President on the advice of the Nigeria Police Council from among serving members of the Police Force”.
“In addition, section 216(2) provides that: “Before making any appointment to the office of the Inspector-General of Police or removing him from office the President shall consult the Nigeria Police Council”.
“Similarly, Nigeria Police Act 2020 states in Section 7(2)that ‘the person to be appointed as Inspector-General of Police shall be a senior police officer not below the rank of an Assistant Inspector-General of Police (AIG) with the requisite academic qualifications of not less than a first degree or its equivalent in addition to professional and management experience’; Section 7(3) of same Police Act states ‘The Inspector General of Police shall be appointed by the President on the advice of the Police Council from among serving members of the Police Force’. Also, Section 7(6) provides ‘The person appointed to the office of the Inspector-General of Police shall hold office for four years’. This subsection was what the minister was relying on to make his position. However, Section 18 (8) of Nigeria Police Act, 2020 is explicit on tenure of a police officer when it says, ‘Every police officer shall, on recruitment or appointment, serve in the Nigeria Police Force for a period of 35 years or until he attains the age of 60 years, whichever is earlier’. So, the law states that someone who is no longer a police officer or who is not a police officer cannot be IGP. So, if the law says by 60 years of age or by 35 years in police service, IGP Usman Alkali is no longer a police officer, how then can he be eligible to be IGP afterwards when the laws says only a serving police officer can be IGP?
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“With the above, the law is very clear on the tenure of a serving IGP and which the President or a Minister cannot override as the law is superior to occupant of any post in the land. Therefore, instead of the minister dissipating energy to seeking the extension of tenure of IGP Usman Alkali, he should focus his energy on searching for the next IGP before the end of February 2023 when Usman Alkali would cease to be a police officer.
“Similarly, the minister should occupy himself with how to convene the next Police Council meeting that would recommend a new IGP for appointment before March 1, 2023.
“Therefore, the minister and the government should stop contemplating on tenure elongation for the current IGP. Rather, the government should strive for improved policing that meets the yearnings of the populace and restore public confidence in the Force.”
Old age comes with aggression: Be patient with your parents (an appraisal of Qur’an17 : 23-24)
Dr. Sanusi Lafiagi is a lecturer in Department of Islamic Studies, Al-Hikmah University Ilorin
Towards understanding your religion: A short treatise on Sujūd as-sahw
Sujūd as-Sahw (prostration of forgetfulness) is a corrective measure legislated by Allāh to rectify certain unintended mistakes in Salāt. It is necessitated by any of the following 3 things:
1. Omission of an action of Salāt
2. Addition of an action of Salāt
3. Doubt over the performance or non-performance of an action of Salāt.
It is important to note that the action of Salāt that necessitates Sujūd as-Sahw is one that falls under any of the following categories:
The Arkān (pillars) of Salāt are:
1. Standing (for the one that is capable)
2. The opening Takbīrah
3. Recitation of Fātiha
5. Rising from it
6. Being straight after rising
8. Rising from it
9. Sitting in-between the two prostrations
10. Performing each pillar with accuracy
11. The last tashahhud (in a 3 or 4 raka’ah prayer & the only one in a two raka’ah prayer)
12. Sitting for the last tashahhud
13. The taslīm
14. Sequential order of the pillars
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The wājibāt (obligatory actions) of Salāt are as follows:
1. Any other Takbīrat apart from the opening Takbīrah
2. Saying of Sami’Allāhu liman hamidah
3. Saying of Rabbānā laka al-hamd
4. Saying of Subhāna rabī al-adhīm in bowing
5. Saying of Subhāna rabī al-A’lā in prostration
6. Saying of Rabbi ighfirlī in the sitting between sujūd
7. The first tashahhud
8. Sitting for the first tashahhud
These are the actions that necessitate the observance of Sujūd as-Sahw should one omit, add, or doubt their performance in Salāt forgetfully. It doesn’t matter if the Salāt were fard (obligatory) or nafl (supererogatory).
It’s important to note that this Sujūd applies to all persons observing Salāt (male/female, old/young, Imām/follower of an Imām/lone worshipper). It’s a compulsory action that’s needed to rectify an unintended mistake in Salāt.
A SHORT TREATISE ON SUJŪD AS-SAHW
Forms of Sujūd as-Sahw
Sujūd as-Sahw occurs at the tail end of Salāt after recitation of the final tashahhud. Depending on the incident that warrants it, it may be performed before the Taslīm (salutation of peace that ends Salāt)or after it.
If it is performed before the taslīm, it is termed ‘Qablī’, and if it is performed after taslīm, it is termed ‘Ba’dī’. The Arabic words قَبْلُ and بَعْدُ connote before & after respectively. Thus, the terms قَبْلِيٌّ & بَعْدِيٌّ are shortened forms of قبل التسليم/بعد التسليم.
Sujūd as-Sahwi is like the normal Sujūd of Salāt. It’s not special in any way. It consists of two Sajdah (prostration) with the normal adhkār of Sujūd; “Subhāna rabbiya’l-A’lā wa bihamdihī” or any other known adhkār of Sujūd (check Sifatu Salāti’n-Nabiyy by Al-Albānī)
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It is important to note that Muslim Jurists have expressed divergent views on whether Sujūd as-Sahw must be observed before the taslīm or after it, irrespective of whether the case was an omission, an addition or that of doubt. The summary of the views is as follows:
Hanafiyyah: All Sujūd as-Sahw must come after Taslīm.
Shāfi’iyyah: All Sujūd as-Sahw must come before Taslīm.
Hanābilah: All Sujūd as-Sahw must come before Taslīm save in 2 cases:
(i) If one makes Taslīm before completion of Salāt e.g. saying Taslīm after 2/3 raka’ats in dhuhr
(ii) If one doubts the exact number of raka’ah that he has prayed but decided to settle for the dominant number in his mind. In both instances, he must make the Sujūd after Taslīm.
Mālikiyyah: Sujūd as-Sahw can occur either before or after the Taslīm, depending on the case. Thus, if it’s a case of omission, it must come before Taslīm, and if it’s a case of addition, it must come after Taslīm. If, however, both omission & addition occur in the particular Salāt, then, the Sujūd must come before the Taslīm. These are the various views of the Jurists.
Sometimes, some people find themselves in a situation where they can not independently determine whether to do the Sujūd before Taslīm or after it. Before I go into specifics in the next thread, know this: Whichever if the Sujūd you do suffices, irrespective of the case.
Do not worry about whether the Sujūd was done before the Taslīm in a case of addition or that it was done after the Taslīm in a case of omission. What matters is that one does the Sujūd in order to rectify and make up for the unintended error committed in any of the acts of Salāt mentioned in the introduction to this treatise. That’s it. Your Salāt remains valid. Don’t let anyone confuse you & do not torture yourself trying to figure out what to do at when. Do I even need to go into specifics again? This is clear enough. I think.
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In conclusion, it’s important to note that after the Sujūd as-Sahw, there’s no need to repeat the tahiyyāt. One should immediately conclude the Salāt by uttering the Taslīm. If, however, one repeats the tahiyyāt either knowingly or unknowingly, his/her Salāt remains valid.
A SHORT TREATISE ON SUJŪD AS-SAHW
Categories of Worshippers With Regards to Sujūd as-Sahw
There are 3 categories of worshippers with regards to the Sujūd as-Sahw. They are:
1. The lone worshipper
2. The Imām
3. Follower of the Imām. This category is further divided into two:
a. The one that observed the prayer in full with the Imām
b. The one that missed a part of the prayer. This category is further divided into two:
a. The one that witnessed the mistake of the Imām
b. The one that joined the Salāt after the mistake has been made.
If a lone worshipper remembers after recitation of Fātiha but before observing rukū’ that he did not make the takbīrat al-Ihrām (opening Takbīrah), he must make the Takbīrah & continue his Salāt. In this situation, he’s not to make Sujūd as-Sahw. If, however, he remembers while on rukū’ or subsequent acts, he must return to the standing position, make the Takbīrat al-Ihrām, complete the Salāt and make the Sujūd as-Sahw after Taslīm.
Also, if he remembers after standing for the 2nd raka’ah, he must discard all that he has prayed immediately & start the Salāt afresh. After Taslīm, he must perform the Sujūd as-Sahw. This same rule applies to if the forgotten pillar were recitation of Fātiha. If he hasn’t reached the rukū’, he should recite Fātiha & no Sujūd as-Sahw is on him.
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If he has reached the rukū’, he must return to the standing position & recite Fātiha. After the Taslīm, he must make the Sujūd as-Sahw. If the lone worshipper recites Fātiha twice forgetfully, there’s nothing on him. If he recites loudly in a Salāt of silent recitation or vice versa, there’s no Sujūd on him. If he remembers in the middle of the recitation, he should continue from that verse without repeating all that he has recited earlier. If he unintentionally recites Fātiha twice, he’s not obliged to observe Sujūd as-Sahw according to the most authoritative view.
A SHORT TREATISE ON SUJŪD AS-SAHW
If the lone worshipper rises to an extra raka’ah (i.e. rising to a 3rd in Subh, or to a 4th in Maghrib, or to a 5th in Dhuhr, ‘Asr, or Ishā’), he must sit down immediately he realizes the error, recite the tahiyyāt, make Taslīm and prostrate twice thereafter. If he continues without sitting, his Salāt becomes invalid & he will start afresh.
If the lone worshipper forgets to make iqāmah before commencement of Salāt, his Salāt is valid & he doesn’t need to do any Sujūd. The iqāmah is neither a rukn (pillar) nor wājib(obligatory act) of Salāt.
If the lone worshipper forgets to say سمع الله لمن حمده or ربنا ولك الحمد, he must do the Sujūd before Taslīm. Once he has left the position where those statements are made, he needs not return to make it up. The Sujūd as-Sahw before Taslīm will take care of it.
If the lone worshipper forgets to say the adhkār of rukū’ or Sujūd at least once, he must do the Sujūd as-Sahw before Taslīm (in the view of the hanābilah). The majority of scholars regard those adhkār as Sunnah & as such no Sujūd is required.
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A SHORT TREATISE ON SUJŪD AS-SAHW
If the lone worshipper remembers in the last raka’ah that he unintentionally omitted a pillar of Salāt (recitation of Fātiha or Rukū’, etc) in any of the previous raka’ah, he must discard that raka’ah and start counting from the one next to it. After the Taslīm, he must perform the Sujūd as-Sahw. Also, if he remembers in the last raka’ah that he omitted Fātiha in the first & rukū’ in the second, then, he must discard both raka’ahs & start counting from the raka’ah he’s on. In all of these, he must performs the Sujūd as-Sahw after Taslīm.
If the lone worshipper forgets to sit for the first Tashahhud but instead rose to the third raka’ah, here, there are three situations:
a. If he intends rising but is yet to rise. In this instance, he sits & recites the tashahhud & is not obliged to do Sujūd as-Sahw.
b. If he were on the rise but was yet to rise fully. In this instance, he must return back to the sitting position & recite the tahiyyāt.
c. If he had fully risen. Here, he must not return back to sitting. If he does, his Salāt becomes invalid (according to a view, another view is, he may return so long as he was yet to commence recitation of Fātiha. I favour the former view that he should not return once he’s fully risen). In both cases, he performs the Sujūd as-Sahw before Taslīm.
If the lone worshipper forgets to recite sūrah after Fātiha, his Salāt is valid & he doesn’t have to make any Sujūd as-Sahw. Recitation of sūrah after is not compulsory. If, however, he does the Sujūd as-Sahw before Taslīm, his Salāt remains valid.
Dr. Sanusi Lafiagi is a lecturer in Department of Islamic Studies, Al-Hikmah University Ilorin
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