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NBBF: Of Two Year Suspension in International Competition

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NBBF: Of Two Year Suspension in International Competition

By: Dr Lanre Glover

It was a dark Thursday for Sports in Nigeria with the announcement that the President had approved the two year suspension of International Participation by Basketball because of factional disagreement of the actors.

It is clear that the Head of State has been misled by the Minister of Sports and the Sports Ministry. Never in the history of sports in Nigeria has a thing like this happened. Even at the peak of crisis in football the Minister or Government did not go this far.

This is unnecessary Government interference in the affairs of Basketball. With due respect, suspending participation from International Participation is a function of a President of Federation and not that of the Sports Minister or Head of State. It is clearly an OVERREACH.

Men of goodwill in Sports and all presidents of Federations must raise their voice in utter condemnation of this outrageous action.

In what way will suspending international basketball for two years solve the problem of Basketball? 

The world is a global village and this action is an embarrassment to the Government and people of Nigeria.  The Ministry under the current Minister rather than encouraging active solution to the crisis has been busy promoting the crisis.

The Ministry claimed there are two elections, who opened up the stadium for the parallel election? They deliberately boycotted the election they called, and have taken every step to ensure basketball fails and yet the Minister is calling them to close ranks.

Basketball Federation or National Federation is the property of ‘WE’ the people and not the Government. In most countries, National Federations are independent and Dalong was going to do this towards the end of his tenure.

The Ministry of Sports should be more concerned with provision and maintenance of facilities most of which currently are in terrible state of disrepair rather than concern themselves with mundane issues like trying to control National Federations.

Also Read: Basketball players ask Minister to resolve NBBF leadership crisis

I personally feel very sad for the players who will not have the opportunity to test their strength and skill against international opposition an important ingredient of local preparation. Also the Minister is cutting his nose to spite his face. For sure basketball would have given Nigeria two sure medals at the coming Commonwealth Games.

The current Government’s term ends in about a year so what is the rationale for a two year suspension? For sure the next Minister will definitely vacate this unjustifiable action which smacks of show of strength.

The Minister could have approached this in a more refined way . As the Minister, all he has to do is refuse to approve international trips by Basketball a power he wields, rather than killing a fly with a sledge hammer.

There is a duly elected Federation in place and it will be a travesty of justice to try and put your own handpicked committee in place to organize the local basketball league. It is a recipe for more crises. 

To the best of my knowledge, the current minister is the most litigated in the history of sports in this country and if he goes ahead with his plan he is likely to attract more litigation.

There is a need to think of what we must be remembered for in Sports Administration. I think the Nigerian Sports journalists and Sports Administrators must stand up for the truth and be counted.

NBBF: Of Two Year Suspension in International Competition

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