The former junior international died in his early 50s on May 14 during a brief illness.
The son of the deceased, Franklin Ekong, made the disclosure in a statement made available to the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) on Wednesday in Lagos.
Ekong, a former junior international died in his early 50s on May 14 during a brief illness.
Emmanuel Udoh, the Team Manager of Akwa United FC of Uyo and a teammate of the late Ekong at Calabar Rovers and the Flying Eagles described him in a tribute as an exceptional striker.
“He was a very dedicated player and always focused.
“I remember during our stay in the national team and in Calabar Rovers, Patrick would always set a target for himself in any match he featured and always delivered.
“He was a real top No. 9, not the type we have these days.
“Patrick was a rare gem both in and outside the field of play. We were the pioneer member of the U-20 national team alongside our captain, Franklin Howard.
“Henry Nwosu and the late Stephen Keshi to mention but a few were in the team then. Nigeria will miss him,’’ the statement quoted Udo as saying.
It noted that the NFF President, Amaju Pinnick, said: “He was a gentleman in every sense of the word, and a level-headed administrator.
“We also must not forget that he represented Nigeria creditably.
“The NFF and the entire Nigeria football family mourn with his family at this period of grief.
“We pray that God Almighty will give them the fortitude to bear the loss and also grants our late friend eternal rest’’.
Ekong played for IBL FC of Ilesa where he was the top scorer in the then first division top flight, Customs FC of Calabar, Calabar Rovers, Jetimo FC and Etesis FC.