Former Nigerian professional basketball power forward, Ejike Christopher Ugboaja, has been elected into the board of the Nigeria Basketball Federation (NBBF) as the athletes’ representative, replacing Olumide Oyedeji.
In the election for the technical representative on the board conducted in Abuja yesterday, Galung Adamu Deshi was also elected into the (NBBF) board, winning with an overwhelming 26 majority vote.
Ugboaja, who contested unopposed, was initially elected through voice vote but on second thought, the representatives of the Ministry of Youth and Sports Development who supervised the election insisted that the 15 delegates must vote to have a documented evidence of the election.
After the casting of the ballot, Ugboaja still emerged winner with the entire 15 delegates voting for him, Deshi garnered a total number of 26 votes to emerge the technical representative of the yet to be constituted (NBBF) board.
Fielding questions from the Sports writers, Ugboaja promised to “recreate and redirect the manner players were treated. As a stakeholder who feels that the players have not been treated fairly, my target will be to see how their lot can be improved.
I was overwhelmingly elected because of their conviction that I have been there for them always. They insisted that I must be on the board because I know that I have the best intention for them.”
Part of my plan is to ensure that I provide insurance cover for the players. Past experiences have shown that most of them have nothing to fall back on after retirement.
“So, my focus would be to ensure that we change that problem and secure their future with the insurance policy. I must ensure that they will have backup even though they want to play in the league or elsewhere,” he added.
Meanwhile, the Ministry of Youth and Sports has warned former Presidents of dissolved boards of sports federations against planning to undermine the laid down process for the forthcoming elections into National Sports Federations.
While advising all contestants to abide by the rules and guidelines adopted by stakeholders of the various sports and the Nigeria Olympic Committee, the Minister, Barrister Solomon Dalung who gave the advice in Abuja maintained that the Ministry is committed to producing democratically elected Sports Federations.
“The boards of all the federations have been dissolved. There is no autonomous board or Federation anywhere. The boards are funded by the federal government and are on federal government’s budget.
Anybody involved or trying to disturb the public peace will have the law agencies to contend with. The date of all sports federations’ elections including the Zonal representatives, Vice Presidents and Presidents remains June 13, 2017,” he said.