Ahead of the ongoing 2023 TotalEnergies CAF African Cup of Nations tournament, which features a match between the Ivory Coast national team, the Elephants, and the Nigerian Super Eagles in the second group stage, the Ivorian government has declared Thursday, January 18, to be a public holiday for all schools in the nation.
The decision is a strategic move to allow citizens to prepare adequately and rally behind their national team as they face Nigeria in a crucial Group A encounter at the Stade Olympique Alassane Ouattara in Abidjan. The declared holiday is expected to enable fans to fully support the Elephants during the match.
In a conversation with a source residing in Cote d’Ivoire, it was confirmed that the government’s directive applies to all public sectors, including schools, with banks having a half-working day.
The highly anticipated match between Cote d’Ivoire and Nigeria is scheduled to kick off at 6 pm Nigerian time. The host nation, Cote d’Ivoire, commenced their AFCON campaign with a convincing 2-0 victory over Guinea Bissau, while Nigeria had a 1-1 draw against Equatorial Guinea in their opening game.
This encounter marks the seventh meeting between Nigeria and Cote d’Ivoire in the AFCON, with both teams having two wins each and two draws. The outcome of this match will significantly impact the standings in Group A, with a win for either side influencing their chances of progressing further in the tournament.