The leadership tussle that has engulfed the Nigeria Basketball Federation (NBBF) has no end in sight after the meeting initiated by the Nigeria Olympic Committee (NOC) to put an end to the crisis ended in deadlock.
The leadership tussle started after Tijani Umar, the winner of the purported NBBF presidential poll in Kano on June 12, failed to acknowledge the presidential election conducted by the NOC cum the Federal Government and won by Musa Kida. The election took place in Abuja on June 13.
The leadership impasse prompted the International Basketball Federation to intervene in July and issue Nigeria with a November 30 ultimatum to resolve the situation or face sanctions.
This was contained in a letter addressed to both Kida and Umar with the international body pointing out that its channel of communication will be with the Kida-led board until November 30.
The body’s Secretary-General Patrick Baumann through the letter said: “In the event that a solution is not found, regardless of any sanctions, FIBA will appoint a task force that will take any appropriate measure(s) in the interests of basketball in Nigeria.”
With the ultimatum already on the horizon, stakeholders have reportedly been trying to put an end to the 5-month old crisis in a bid to avoid sanctions.
While confirming that the NOC meeting to put an end to the crisis took place in Abuja, the spokesman for the Olympic body, Tony Ubani, also revealed that the meeting was with the leaders of both factions and that it ended in a deadlock.
In his words, Ubani said: “The meeting ended in stalemate.”
“While Kida is holding on to his mandate, Umar is insistent on a new election, saying he supports FIBA’s position that the two elections were not carried out in accordance with its statues.” he added.
He also pointed out that the NOC decided to give both factions one week to reach an amicable solution and that the body will write to FIBA for an extension to the November 30 deadline.
Speaking further, the NOC chief said: “We gave them time to discuss to enable us to resolve the crisis but both groups stuck to their guns.”
“We will make further consultations to resolve the matter because we don’t want Nigeria to be banned.” he concluded.