The Antalyaspor striker, who spoke with the Cable News Network on Thursday in an interview, which was monitored by our correspondent, lamented the lack of attention internationally for terrorism in Africa.
He said, “It is important that African people, who are successful, raise their voices to denounce these horrors and raise awareness among the general public.
“I was affected, like many of my African brothers, by Boko Haram. We haven’t been affected by such horrors in a very long time. In the midst of these atrocities, we seem powerless. We saw what happened in France with Charlie Hebdo.
“We were all very sad about this situation and we saw African heads of state coming to Paris to offer their support to France. Why — when it comes to Africa, when it comes to our continent — don’t we do anything?”
The former African Footballer of the Year, while unveiling his charity, Yellow Whistleblower FC, said he would raise $50m to deal with the Boko Haram insurgency in Nigeria, which has spilled into neighbouring countries such as Cameroon, Niger and Chad.
A total of £51,250 (about $78,480) had been raised when our correspondent visited the group’s website on Thursday.
Speaking on racism against African footballers, Eto’o said, “When you’re African and you’re sometimes better than Europeans or Americans, you are not considered as African. I can’t say no to life, to hope. Hope is the reason; I still have hope for our African continent.
“I really hope there will be other Samuel Eto’os or Yaya Toures and others who are part of history. In order to be part of history, you need to have an impact on life several times. When you impact history several times, that means you are out of the ordinary. That’s why in Africa, we need to say no to ignorance, while accepting and understanding our values.”