Popular journalist, Olajide Fashikun passed away on Sunday, at the Federal Medical Center, Jabi in Abuja.
The deceased, aged 54, was an ex-international handball player and sports stakeholder.
Fashikun had served as Chairman, Kwara State Chapter of Sports Writers Association of Nigeria, Sports Editor of the Herald newspaper, Managing Editor of Gong News, Senior Sports correspondent at ThisDay newspaper, and was a lecturer at Kwara Polytechnic.
A statement by Nneka Ikem-Anibuze, Special Assistant on Media to Minister of Sports, Solomon Dalung, said it was a very sad day for sports journalists and athletes in the country.
“Jide created a platform to support athletes and stimulate performance through his mobilization of training funds to assist athletes.
“This made us look forward to a better podium performance in the years ahead. Today, the curtains have been drawn on that project,” he said.
Dalung paid glowing tributes to the publisher of Gong News who excelled not only in sports reportage but also politics and investigative writing.
“Jide, a dedicated journalist who went far to uphold the truth. He was a fighter, fearless, thorough and an epitome of investigative journalism while contributing immensely to grassroots sports development.
“His love for grassroots sports informed his personal effort to raise funds for athletes to train with and prepare for future Olympic Games.
“Now, Jide is gone. I pray that God will receive him and give his wife and family the fortitude to bear this loss,” he said.