“The Africa Cup of Nations has always been an exciting and important sports event for us in Nigeria and other African countries. However, this edition of 2013 even holds a greater significance for us as a nation,” read the letter to the team personally signed by President Jonathan.
“Next year 2014, our dear country will be one hundred years old. As we look back and celebrate our achievements as a strong, united nation, we cannot understate the role that sports, especially football played in our national life.
“Football remains one enduring unifying factor in our country which transcends our diversity. A successful outing at the Africa Cup of Nations will offer a great opportunity to further inspire pride, faith and hope in a re-energised new Nigeria in the course of our centennial celebrations”.