*As NBBF decamps U-16 team
President of the Nigeria Basketball Federation (NBBF), Engineer Musa Kida, has reaffirmed his Board’s commitment to players’ welfare during their tenure.
Speaking on Wednesday evening at the Indoor Sports Hall of the National stadium immediately after training of the Senior Women’s national team who are preparing for the 2017 Afrobasket competition in Mali, Kida described Nigerian players both home and abroad as his personal clients as the NBBF president.
“One thing I have always maintained is that the players are my personal clients and preferred customers as the president of the Nigeria Basketball Federation. They are the people who I swore an oath to make sure I create the best enabling environment to exhibit their talents.”
He lamented the hard decision of the federation to decamp the Junior D’Tigress who had been in camp for about two weeks in preparation for the FIBA Africa U-16 women’s championship in Mozambique under the watchful eyes of the team’s assistant coach, Tony Nelson.
Engineer Kida said the move became necessary when it was obvious that the team would not be able to participate at the competition which will start Friday after the federation could not complete the team’s registration before the deadline by FIBA Africa.
Despite all spirited attempts by the new board to cover up for lost time before their official inauguration, Kida said FIBA Africa decided to kick out Nigeria from the cadet competition citing rules governing the competition.
He said the federation would have loved to keep the 15-man team in camp, but due to the financial status of NBBF, they had no choice but to tell the team to reconvene in another three weeks for a cadet zonal competition in Togo.
Kida assured that all financial entitlements of the players and coaches for the duration of the camping exercise have been paid in full before they were decamped on Thursday.
“I can tell you on presidential authority that if they come to camp, they are entitled to their allowances. Even the jerseys we gave to them for the camping exercise, they will go with the jerseys just to tell them that they are worth their onions and that NBBF this time around is out to respect its players.”
He stressed that he is 100% responsible to ensure they are happy and in turn motivated in whatever way possible to carry out their day to day activities as true professionals.