The Nigeria Basketball Federation (NBBF), yesterday, reaffirmed its support for the president of the Federation, Musa Kida, while denouncing the recent interim management committee set up by the Federal Government to manage basketball in the country.
The Federal Government, last week, pulled the country out of all international competitions for two years, citing the need to resolve the protracted NBBF leadership crisis. In NBBF’s stead, the government named an Interim Management Committee, led by Dr. Henry Nzekwu, to manage the sport for the two years.
But the NBBF, yesterday, rejected the arrangement, affirming their support for the Kida-led board as the only body saddled with administering basketball in the country.
In a statement yesterday, the NBBF noted the content of the Federal Ministry of Sports’ press statement on the constitution of an Interim Management Committee to run basketball in Nigeria “instead of the legally elected board of the NBBF” elected at the January 31, 2022 elective congress in Benin, Edo State.
It added: “The Nigeria Basketball Federation, therefore, denounces the Interim Management Committee set up by the Federal Ministry of Youth and Sports Development, as this action is not in line with the provisions of the NBBF approved statutes, which the ministry vetted, accepted and a copy was domiciled with them.
“The idea of an Interim Management committee is alien to the NBBF Statutes as approved by the same Ministry of Youths and Sports Development, the NOC and FIBA, under which the affairs of the Federation are governed.
“It further violates FIBA Statutes and Regulations and is indeed a deliberate usurpation of power that has made Nigeria a laughing stock amongst the comity of basketball-playing nations.”
In rejecting the IMC, the NBBF said, “we reserve the right, as a properly elected body, in line with the 2019 NBBF Constitution, domiciled with FIBA, NOC and the FMY&SD to implement the mandate entrusted to us by basketball stakeholders in Nigeria.”
The body regretted that after “all means of patience and dialogue, some persons within the ministry are hell-bent on destroying what Nigerian basketball has built since the creation and admission of the NBBF, as a member of FIBA.
“We, as a body, call on the FMY&SD to reverse this retrogressive decision and respect their own FMYSD press release of the September 30, 2021 clearly affirming and spelling out the position of the Nigerian government on the NBBF electoral process and urge all aggrieved stakeholders to channel their grievances through the NBBF for resolution, as the adequate mechanism for conflict resolution is inbuilt in the 2019 approved NBBF constitution.”