Following the unending crisis rocking the leadership of the Nigeria Basketball Federation (NBBF), the Federal Government is planning to set up an Interim Management Committee (IMC) to oversee the management and development of the domestic leagues as well as address related issues surrounding the development and advancement of the sport.
This became necessary following the decision by the government to withdraw the country from international tournaments for two years over the lingering crisis bedevilling the leadership of the sport.
NBBF has been embroiled in a leadership crisis since 2017 which saw the emergence of Musa Kida as NBBF President but the 2021 election of the new NBBF board witnessed the two parallel elections held in Abuja and Benin respectively with Kida getting re-elected in Benin while Mark Igoche emerging as president from the Abuja poll.
Since the 2021 poll that produced two NBBF Presidents, peace has not been in sight, and yesterday in a statement signed by the Permanent Secretary, Federal Ministry of Youth and Sports Development Ismaila Abubakar, the government ordered the withdrawal of the country from international competitions for two years.
“Following the unending crisis that has plagued and nearly crippled the development of basketball in Nigeria, President Muhammadu Buhari has approved the withdrawal of Nigeria from all international basketball competitions for a period of two years with immediate effect.”
“The withdrawal of Nigeria is in order to concentrate efforts by the government towards revamping the sport from the grassroots as well as domestic leagues which have become moribund,” Abubakar said.
The government intends to use the break to address contentious issues among stakeholders while the composition and terms of reference of the IMC would be made known soon.
The government, however, affirmed commitment to the growth of the sport while urging players, officials, fans, and stakeholders of the sport to remain calm as efforts are on to reposition, sustain and stabilize the game of basketball in the country.