NBBF, Total E&P move to reposition Nigeria’s basketball, sign MoU
In a significant move to support sports development, the Nigerian Basketball Federation (NBBF) has signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with Total E&P Nigeria Limited, in order to reposition Basketball game in Nigeria.
The signing of the MoU is expected to contribute to the transformation of sports business in the country and demonstrates the goodwill and corporate social responsibility of the oil and gas firm in identifying with basketball development in Nigeria.
Speaking at a press conference where the document was signed, the minister of Youth and Sports Sunday Dare, said the ministry places premium on grassroots sports programmes and development, adding that it was a sure way of providing a nursery for elite podium performance.
“I urge everyone to support the effort of the government in repositioning sports in Nigeria,” Dare exhorts.
The federal government recently reclassified sports from being mere recreation to business.
This means that sports driven around a business model will create jobs, generate revenue, add value to the talents of the athletes and also attract private investments.
With that, the sports minister said it was evident that the government is more determined to provide a conducive atmosphere to stimulate corporate involvement in sports development in the country.
“We are on our way to deliver a revised policy on sports that will turn sports into an industry,” he told stakeholders.
While commending Total E&P Nigeria Limited for sponsoring the National Division 1&2 Men’s Basketball League—a gesture he described as a reflection of their commitment to the development of youths in sports—he evinced hopes that other corporate organisations and philanthropist would copy Total E&P’s gesture.
NBF itself has attained numerous victories and accolades at both Africa and world levels. The Nigerian Men’s Team (D’Tigers) is ranked as first in Africa and 23rd in the world, while the Women’s Team (D’Tigress) is ranked as first in Africa and 14th in the world.
These achievements have been linked to the effectiveness and proactiveness of the Board of Nigerian Basketball Federation under the leadership Ahmadu Musa Kida since the inauguration in 2017.
“I’m quite proud of what we have done in the last two years,” Kida said with a smirk of satisfaction.
On what fans and Nigerian should expect from the team in the next Olympics, Kida averred that Nigerians represent the country with strength and motivation than he has never seen in any other athlete in the world.
However, while he could not guarantee that the team would always come first, he assured Nigerians that the team will always make an excellent show no matter where it is.
“This is what I am expecting from that team,” he said.
Regarding the Afro Basket Qualifiers for 2021 which is coming up in November, NBBF’s president said preparations are going on to ensure performance and team’s participation in Rwanda.
“We’re hoping that at that time the federal government on the advice of the PTF on the federal ministry of health, will allow us to undertake basketball which is a contact sport. We’re relenting, we’re resting on our oars. We are in full preparation in case the green light is given to us to go and participate in Rwanda,” Kida said.