NBBF raises alarm over ‘illegal’ African Basketball League in Lagos
Referees, technical commissioners suspended
The Nigeria Basketball Federation (NBBF), has alerted Nigerians over what it described as ‘unauthorised’ takeoff of an unapproved’ basketball league in Lagos named African Basketball League.
According to the spokesman of NBBF, Patrick Omorodion, “this unapproved African Basketball League is organised by a group calling itself Africa Sports and Entertainment Management Company Limited (ASEMC).”Omorodion told The Guardian yesterday that NBBF is the sole competent governing body of basketball in Nigeria.
“For the benefit of the general public, especially sponsors, partners, players, technical officials, media and other basketball stakeholders, only the NBBF has the competence and authority to approve such a league in Nigeria and only FIBA Africa, the governing body of the game in Africa is competent to approve any type of African league and no such approval has been granted by either of the two bodies,” he said.
Omorodion stated that the exploratory meetings held by NBBF, FIBA Africa and organisers of the ‘so-called’ African Basketball League clearly spelt out the conditions to be met before the proposed league can be approved, adding that none of these conditions have been met.
The NBBF has challenged ASEMC to follow the path of honour by observing due process and obtaining approval from the competent bodies before floating the league.
“All basketball followers are advised that the league as it is presently constituted and presented to the unsuspecting and uninformed public is unauthorised, illegal, without a guaranteed basis and fraught with problems.
“For the proper guidance of the general public, the basketball federations of Cote d’Ivoire, Gabon, Senegal, and other countries purportedly having one team each in the league have not granted approval for this league in their countries as a result of which none of the three teams supposedly from these countries can presently play a home game in Abidjan, Libreville or Dakar respectively. ” Omorodion stated.
He further stated: “The NBBF would pursue all legal means at its disposal to enforce the observance of due process in this matter and as a first step, all the referees that officiated in the illegal league to date namely Segun Adekanmbi, Lai Alimi and Samuel Shofoluwe are hereby suspended indefinitely with immediate effect and FIBA Africa will take necessary disciplinary action against them for flouting its clear directives.
“On their part, the technical commissioners and statisticians who officiated in the illegal league to date are hereby also suspended indefinitely from all NBBF organised programmes.
“These corrective actions are going to be continuous as and when the need arises and it is hoped that the general public will now be properly guided to make the right decisions regarding the illegal league,” Omorodion stated.