B’Ball: Stakeholders Want Elections Feb. 6, despite agreement on New Date

Heats’ white and coach Ballah-web.jpg

Despite the agreement by the Liberia Basketball Association, LNOC and Ministry and Youth Sports officials to host LBA elections on February 18, after its general assembly on February 17, several stakeholders have appealed for the elections on February 6, as originally scheduled by the association.

In a statement signed by G. N. Wright (Pythons), Timberwolves’ J. J. Harris, Commissioners’ Dennis K. Hubbard and Dream Team 11’s W. Jamisson, it noted the “excellent manner and form the association conducted their activities, during the outbreak of the deadly Ebola outbreak.”

Though there has been a recent allegation by the administration’s financial secretary of the ‘misuse’ of US$8,000.00, being a part payment of U$15,000.00 from Cellcom for its bill boards at the Sports Commission, and the silence by Cellcom-GSM, the statement ignored the issue and noted, “We are pleased to have received the timetable and guidelines for the upcoming elections of the association.”

Though several club presidents who have stood up to the administration, insisting that it must provide the last three years report, (it was reduced to one year), including financial report for study and comments and to ensure probity which has been supported by officials at the Liberia National Olympic and the Ministry of Youth $ Sports’ officials, the statement received by the Daily Observer yesterday, seemed concern about the delay in having the elections.

“The early conduct of the elections will usher in a brand new corps of officers with new ideas and vigor which when blended with the passion of stakeholders will ensure that the game of basketball is lifted to another level.”

Though LNOC and MYS got LBA president Rufus Anderson and his team to agree to what is necessarily done in the forthcoming elections, by providing one-year administrative report to all the stakeholders for examination as the basis for the general assembly, the statement, also signed by Georgia Blazers’ Musa Kamara; Heats’ Johnny White, Supreme Brothers’ Isaac Smith, and five others in the second division, looked at the issue differently.

Ignoring the concerns agreed to during past deliberations with LNOC and Youth and Sports, they said, “We are calling on all basketball lovers: coaches, financiers, players, fans, among others to join hands as we prepare to bring on board a new leadership that will steer the affairs of basketball for the next four years.”

And though LNOC and Youth and Sports officials, including the LBA administration have agreed to delay the elections till documents were produced to all clubs, the statement seems to suggest that early elections would solve issues raised by the administration’s opponents.

Quoting the constitution of the Liberia Basketball Federation that has not been amended to be known as Liberia Basketball Association being used by the administration, Heats’ Secretary General Johnny White said such an issue could be addressed at the congress but remained adamant that February 17 and 18 dates would delay the next league.

Further ignoring substantive issues raised and accepted for the way forward, the statement, in what seemed to be at variance of what is at stake, urged the “Ministry of Youth & Sports not to yield to any concocted plan by non-basketball stakeholders and disqualified and illegitimate individuals who want to delay the elections for their own selfish interest and bring a downward trend to the game.”

But sources at the MYS and the LNOC told the Daily Observer that at the recent meeting at the ministry, “We are agreed to do the right thing and therefore we are with the hope that everyone concerned would exercise a great amount of restrain to ensure the right thing to do.”

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