By Salifu Usman, Abuja
NBBF factional president, Ahmadu Musa Kida decried the absence of the Premier Basketball League that has been in limbo for the past three years due to legal tussle.
He said Nigeria with huge potential in basketball should have a highly competitive league for men which will give the players, coaches and officials a chance to develop their skills.
He accused the Kwese League Management Committee put in place by the Kwesé Sports, Africa’s first pan-African free-to-air channel, who secured the title sponsor of the Nigeria Men’s Premier Basketball League on a five-year deal worth a total of $12 million in 2017 earlier this year, of playing destructive game to achieve political goal.
“We are legally stopped from having that league. The sad part of this is that the Kwese League Management Board under Olumide Oyedeji and Gombe Bulls took us to court to stop us from undertaking that league are people who claim to have the interest of basketball at heart,” kida stated yesterday in a press statement signed by Oni Afolabi O.
The Kwese sponsorship deal signed by the Tijjani Umar-led board of NBBF in 2017 was expected to run till 2021 seasons at a license fee of $2.2 million per season for all NBBF events, including the Women’s Premier Basketball League.
However, the lingering leadership crisis in the NBBF since the sports federation’s elections in 2017, brought the league to a halt and negative impact on the sponsorship deal.
The absence of the league, Kida said it hurts him the most on the premise that as president of the NBBF faction he cannot organise any league competition.
“I should have a performing league, a very robust league. Unfortunately, this order has not been vacated as the court kept adjourning the matter for the past three years. Even a contempt of court case was instigated against the board for organising the President’s Cup that involved all Premier League clubs. As a result of the court case and injunctions has left us handcuffed.”