Dalung Accuses FIBA of Causing Confusion in NBBF

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  • Plans security clampdown on Tijani Umar’s faction

Duro Ikhazuagbe

Sports Minister, Solomon Dalung, has revealed plans are underway to ensure that property and sponsorship funds still with the immediate past board of the Nigeria Basketball Federation (NBBF) headed by Tijani Umar are retrieved to end the impression being created that factions exist in the governing of the game in the country.

Speaking at an interactive session at the NOC boardroom in Lagos yesterday, the minister insisted that as far as he was concerned there are no factions in NBBF and anybody parading himself as a board member at any other election apart from the one that held on June 13, 2017 at the National Stadium in Abuja was a fraud.

“We are going to direct security agencies in the country to take action on such persons parading themselves as NBBF board members,” stressed Dalung.

The minister blamed the games’ world ruling body, FIBA, for the confusion in NBBF.

“FIBA is the one causing problem in our basketball. We have concluded everything about elections in our sports federation. I don’t know why FIBA is encouraging illegality by calling for fresh elections,” observed Dalung.

He further insisted that the reforms he introduced on assumption of office as sports minister were aimed at ending situations where certain elements in the running of Nigeria sports were turning themselves into dictators in the federations.

“We introduced reforms in the sports federations and organised a free and transparent elections. I don’t know how a man who did not pick form to stand for an election would be talking about being elected. Interestingly, the case has gone to the Court of Arbitration for Sports (CAS) and a winner emerged. I am a lawyer and knows what the rule of law stands for,” the minister stressed.

“We won’t allow this illegality to continue. We would soon recover every basketball property including whatever sponsorship the game is currently enjoying,” Dalung concluded.

The two factions of the NBBF are led by Ahmadu Musa Kida who duly won the election supervised by the Sports Ministry on June 13 and the previous board President Tijani Umar who was returned to office at another election in Kano on June 12.

Despite FIBA’s directive for the two factions to streamline and arrive at a new constitution for the country before a fresh election is to take place, they are holding to their respective positions of ‘no deal’ which may result in the world body appointing an interim committee to run the game in Nigeria.