The former Caretaker Chairman of the Nigeria Basketball Federation, Musa Ahmadu-Kida, has clashed with the Secretary General of the association, Afolabi-Oluwayemisi Olabisi, over an unpaid N6million he used for the clearance of kits of the Nigerian team during the Tokyo 2020 Olympics.
Recall that the NBBF general election had been slated to hold on the last Saturday of October, before the Federal Ministry of Youths and Sports Development postponed it indefinitely.
The NBBF board, led by Kida, had insisted on continuing with the election but later soft-pedalled to settle all disputes before the election would hold.
The ministry would later go on to dissolve the caretaker board of the NBBF, and as it stands, basketball federation in Nigeria has no leadership.
In a letter to the Secretary General of the association, Kida requested for a refund of N6million he used to clear kits used for the last Olympics before he could handover sporting equipment with him.
He said, “I refer to your letter dated 9th of November 2021, on above subject and I am quite surprised that it’s coming from you, as you should be very abreast of where kitting and apparel donations to National Basketball teams stand within the NBBF.
“It will excite you to know that the PEAK sponsorship with NBBF has been for the provision of uniforms on a tournament-by-tournament basis, the last been the carried forward for the 2020 Olympics held this year, as the contract itself has expired since last year. You are also most aware of the enormous challenges with Custom clearance for the last batch of the Olympics uniforms this year.
“It required the serious interventions of the Hon. Minister FMYSD with the Federal Ministry of Finance to make it reality. The official receipted Custom and clearing charges that NBBF had to incur in getting the uniforms out of Apapa Wharf was more than 6 millon naira, which I fully paid and that is yet to be refunded by the ministry.
“You are also aware that this consignment covered for the Olympics and was used with extra procured to execute the 2021 Men’s Afro-basket. The remnants are very incomplete bits and pieces of outfits as with other consignment in the past. I would urge you to process my refund efficiently, and once that is done, I can handover the remnants of the kits from the Tokyo Olympics.
“In as much as I believe you re illegally and deliberately usurping the powers of the NBBF Board by trying to create task-force to organise and undertake the FIBA November qualifiers, you contact PEAK directly to purchase equipment or kits from them for your intended purposes.
“Sec, I must warn you that your recent actions will potentially cause a huge embarrassment to Nigeria Basketball and the country at large as you have side stepped the NBBF Board in all your recent undertakings.”
Before the dissolution of the NBBF committee, Ahmadu-Kida, two weeks ago had made an appeal to the Minister of Youth and Sports Development, Sunday Dare, over the release of the ‘adopt-an-athlete’ funds meant for the preparation of D’Tigers and D’Tigress teams prior to the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games.
In the letter, the NBBF had demanded the sum of $230,000 raised through the programme for the men and women’s national teams.
The letter, signed by Ahmadu-Kida and the Secretary General of the NBBF, Olabisi Afolabi, titled ‘Re: Donations To The NBBF Under the Honourable Minister’s Adopt An Athlete Programme For Olympic Basketball Teams, read, “We would like to commend the Honourable Minister for his creative initiative and state that this is real and concrete evidence of the Honorable Minister’s sincere commitment towards the growth and development of basketball in the country, which has continued to encourage NBBF to strive to represent the country no matter the challenges it faces.
“The Honourable Minister is also very aware that the NBBF has not received any fund from the ministry’s execution of the Tokyo 2020 Olympics preparation and camping for the national men’s and women’s team.
“These principally held in the USA with friendlies in the USA and Europe.
“I will recall to the Honourable Minister that the men’s team made history by beating the USA and Argentina, the first and fourth-ranked basketball countries in the world.”
Meanwhile, the government dissolved the NBBF executives because of internal wrangling and rivalry in the federation.