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Leon Balogun discloses NFF president's strategy against Alex Iwobi's online abuse

Posted : 05 March 2024

Super Eagles defender, Leon Balogun, has addressed the pressing issue of social media abuse targeting football players, particularly referencing the recent case involving his teammate Alex Iwobi.

Iwobi faced substantial criticism and cyberbullying that led him to take a hiatus from social media, following his performance at the 2023 Africa Cup of Nations tournament.

Participating in FIFPRO's "Workplace Safety For Footballers" session on X (formerly Twitter) space, the Rangers FC defender discussed potential solutions to combat online abuse directed at players. Balogun stressed the importance of implementing a code of conduct and holding individuals accountable for their actions. He proposed severe consequences for fans engaging in abusive behavior, including police intervention.

In addressing the situation involving Alex Iwobi post-AFCON final, Balogun disclosed ongoing discussions with the President of the Nigeria Football Federation, Ibrahim Gusau. The discussions revolved around implementing measures to address online abuse, including the use of cybersecurity and law enforcement to identify and prosecute offenders.

Balogun remarked, "Probably the most effective way to go after people at this point in time is to really make examples and go after them hard, use police force." He highlighted a conversation with the NFF President, who expressed the intent to employ cybersecurity, resembling cyber police, to trace the origins of the abuse.

Despite the challenges posed by online abuse, Iwobi has recently returned to social media, sharing a rap song that narrates his experiences at the club level and underscores his commitment to the national team.


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