The ongoing stalemate in the Liberia Basketball Association (LBA), which began more than three months owing to the unremitting contest for “legitimacy and expiration of tenure,” has been attributed to the failure of the outgoing basketball president to “honorably resign.”
Ali Sylla, co-chairman of the Liberia Basketball Presidents Association (LBPA) has restated his plea to the outgoing President Rufus Anderson to resign on principle to enable him keep his “honor” intact.
He made the assertion yesterday in an exclusive interview with the Daily Observer on the Campus of the Muslim Congress High School on Mechlin Street.
Sylla, who is also the founder and president of 2nd division basketball team D Rocks, said the continuous hanging on until the bitter end would not only hamper the game but affects his (Rufus Anderson’s) integrity and consequently result to him hanging his head in shame.
“Some months ago, I was the first stakeholder who called for the resignation of Rufus Anderson for the promotion and development of basketball owing to the decline of the league and the lack of accountable,” Mr. Sylla said.
He added, “I am again calling on Mr. Anderson to honorably resign in order for us to easily go to elections.
“If he resigns, I don't think it would be a cowardly resignation but rather it’s an honorable one – because it would be for the sake of the over 50,000 kids who are playing the game.”
The LBPA co-chairman thanked the Ministry of Youth and Sports for seeking the involvement of the continental governing body, FIBA-Africa to avoid political interference.
Sylla said they anticipate FIBA-Africa would begin its investigation by requesting the Association of National Olympic Committees of Africa (ANOCA) through the Liberia National Olympic Committee (LNOC) to help and expedite the resolution of the crisis.
When contacted a source from Anderson told the Daily Observer that he is waiting for the intervention of FIBA-Africa.
It may be recalled FIBA-Africa vowed to offer requisite provisions that would lead to finding a “relevant solution” in the leadership crisis of the Liberia Basketball Association (LBA) but did not say how and when.
FIBA Africa’s letter was a reply owing to a two-page letter of complaint from the Deputy Sports Minister, Henry B. Yonton on the basketball leadership crisis.
Minister Yonton said the aggrieved stakeholders raised five issues, which include: the violation of the constitution of the LBA by Mr. Rufus Anderson, for not holding elections the fourth year of his term and make his administration illegitimate and that club(s) that didn’t participate in the immediate past season should not be eligible for the congress.
Meanwhile, Sylla has revealed plans to host a 6-team basketball tournament, which is expected to bring together four male teams and two female teams.
“The pre-season tournament is intended to scrap the rust from the players and help to keep them in form,” Sylla said.