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Exclusive: Kida, a disaster to Nigerian basketball, NBBF Board should be dissolved – Kingsley Aigbonoga

Going forward, the board of the NBBF should be dissolved with immediate effect; the federal government is not showing interest in basketball due to the leadership of the federation. Kida is a disaster to Nigerian basketball, and the earlier we recognize that fact, the better for us as a country"

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Basketball fans in Nigeria have lashed out at the Nigeria Basketball Federation and the Federal Ministry of Sports Development for the abysmal performance of the D’Tigers at the recently concluded 2023 FIBA AfroBasket qualifiers in Monastir, Tunisia.

Persecondnews reports that the Nigerian male basketball team has already crashed out of the Paris Olympics and the World Cup.

The D’Tigers were paired in Group B alongside Cape Verde, Uganda, and Libya. Following a disorderly build-up to Window 1 of the qualifiers in Tunisia, the D’Tigers lost all three games.

Their participation in the qualifiers was chaotic, with the team arriving on the opening day of the qualifiers and taking to the court without much rest.

This was due to the paucity of funds from the federation and the Ministry of Sports Development’s inability to provide the needed funds as when due.

In an interview with Persecondnews, Kingsley Aigbonoga (known as Peekay), a member of the FCT Basketball Association, criticized the Musa Kida-led NBBF for their ‘fire brigade’ attitude, which has left the D’Tigers qualifications hanging by a thread.

PSN: What’s your thoughts on the D’Tigers performance at the just-concluded Afrobasket qualifiers?

Aigbonoga: “The board of the NBBF knew that we had a tournament and delayed with their preparations until the last minute. The Kida-led federation is in disarray.

“Is it in February that they know we are going to a tournament? We went to the qualifiers with nine players, no camping, nothing, and you expect great results no way.

“Kida is a disaster to Nigerian basketball, and the earlier we recognize that fact, the better for us as a country.

“Good preparation brings forth excellent performance. Some of the teams in our group have been in camp weeks before the Afrobasketball qualifiers; tickets and other allowances were made available before time, but here in Nigeria we are battling with funds.

“There is no country in the world that has more countrymen playing in the NBA than Nigeria. Either born in Nigeria or America, every year we have Nigerians drafted into the NBA.

“So how many players have been drafted from the Nigerian league to the D’Tigers? Without a good league, you can’t have a competitive national team.

“We had a proper league in the 90s; what we have now is an abridged league in 2024. A lot of Nigeria went global because we had a thriving league then; there is nothing like that anymore.

“There is no league in Nigeria; if your league can’t develop players to move into the national team and generate funds, then you are not running a league.

“Where is the blueprint for the development of basketball in Nigeria? Our league is not the same any longer.

“Going forward, the board of the NBBF should be dissolved with immediate effect; the federal government is not showing interest in basketball due to the leadership of the federation.

“We have the President, two Vice Presidents, and six zonal representatives, and none of them can take the initiative to run basketball without running to the government for help every time? it’s sad.

“Where is the blueprint for the development of basketball in Nigeria? Our league is not the same any longer.”

 

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