The Nigerian Basketball Vanguard, a group of major basketball stakeholders in the country, has demanded a transparent election into the board of the Nigeria Basketball Federation (NBBF).
The basketball community in Nigeria has been in crisis since after its 2017 election where two factions of executive members emerged.
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Since then, all efforts to resolve the issues by stakeholders both within and outside the country have been in vain.
On Tuesday, the Ministry of Youth and Sports Development released a timetable for the elections into the board of six federations that have their constitutions ratified by their international sports bodies and the Nigeria Olympic Committee (NOC), including NBBF.
The national elections are scheduled to take place on September 30th at the Moshood Abiola National Stadium Abuja.
However, the Nigeria Basketball Vanguard said it had sent a petition to the world basketball governing body, International Basketball Federation (FIBA), over the constitution of the NBBF.
While speaking on behalf of the group, Tijani Umar said major stakeholders of the game in the country had no input in the document which would now guide the conduct of the election.
“We need to have a transparent election conducted in 2021.
“We need open elections and we are going to demand transparency and accountability from sports authorities, including the Nigeria Olympic Committee by way of consultation, negotiation, persuasion and if need be, by using all legitimate means to ensure that there is fair play, there is equity, inclusion, transparency and accountability in the conduct of NBBF affairs,” he said.
Umar lamented that, from 2009 to 2015, basketball’s possibilities in the country were almost limitless.
“We qualified for the Olympics for the first time. We were showing the sign that everything is possible with Nigerian basketball.
“Then we started the slid down in 2017 with that most fraudulent election process.
“We can not continue to stand and watch a team of mediocre run basketball in Nigeria,” he said.