Orji Uzor Kalu Explains why he Ignored Enyinmba FC but Chose to Invest in Arsenal
On Tuesday November 17th, 2020, news broke that Nigerian politician and businessman, Orji Uzor Kalu, was set to acquire 35% stake in Arsenal FC. Kalu is the second Nigerian businessman to express interest in the English football club. Before now, Africa’s richest man, Aliko Dangote, already expressed his desire to acquire the club.
Following the news, some Nigerians questioned why Mr Kalu decided to acquire Arsenal instead of Aba-based Enyimba FC. In reaction to this, he issued a lengthy Twitter statement explaining why. According to him, the main reason he chose not to invest in Enyimba FC [for now] is because the club is owned by the government. He, however, noted that acquiring a significant stake in Arsenal would enable him to help the local football club through what he described as a ‘strategic partnership’.
“I read some of your comments asking me to invest in Enyimba FC instead, but I can’t because Enyimba is a government enterprise and not a commercial entity. I would have long bought Enyimba if it was commercialized. With Arsenal we will make Enyimba become great again with the strategic partnership we are packaging. We shall turn it around to create a platform for more of our professional players seeking for international exposure A win-win outing for all parties & and valuable investment as well . Doing what you love and loving it is where greatness lies . I need 35% of Arsenal to bring back trophies,” Orji Uzor Kalu wrote.
As a young man,I embraced business before I walked into politics.I found greatness in trading before the call to serve beckoned.The records out there are evidently confirming this position.I see opportunities & never afraid to make them possibilities.This was richly applied… pic.twitter.com/l7Qox7Em8D
— Senator Orji Uzor Kalu (@OUKtweets) November 17, 2020
The businessman has since had a keen interest in football. And between 1999 and 2007 when he was the Governor of Abia State, he pumped in significant resources into Enyimba Football Club, helping it to to win the CAF Champions League in 2003 and 2004. A considerable number of international football stars also emerged from Enyimba FC during this period. Unfortunately, Enyimba FC has since remained a local champion with no visible growth prospects.
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