LNOC, Youth & Sports Must Rescue Basketball

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It comes a time in the life of a people or an organization that compels someone to act for the common good of all. If that opinion is correct, which I have no doubt about, then I need someone at the Liberia National Olympic Committee and the Ministry of Youth & Sports to act.

The headline to this commentary suggests that Liberian basketball deserves an urgent rescue, and followers of the game can agree that since the partial end of the Ebola virus disease that has encouraged other sporting organizations, including the LFA to restart their programs, Liberian Basketball Federation seemed to have no way forward.

True, for at least four occasions, a congress and its attendant scheduled elections could not be held due to disagreements on administrative issues.

LNOC President Phillibert Brown and Deputy Minister for Sports, Hon. Henry Yonton paid considerable attention to burning issues raised by several club presidents but ended in failure.

At one point, LNOC’s Brown was compelled to remark openly that Rufus Anderson’s administration failed to do those little things that could have earned the confidence of those who were calling for his head, and therefore because Anderson did not do them, he lost the authority to lead the organization.

As painful as those remarks were, Mr. Brown, who held the leadership of the Liberia Basketball Federation for many years, could not be wrong. Then of course, he is the president of the Liberia National Olympic Committee.

The LNOC has been one of the major sponsors of basketball and therefore if Brown does not see an individual as capable to lead an association that he has to provide financial and logistical support to, then of course there could be a problem in the future.

But it is important to accept the fact that Mr. Rufus Anderson deserves some credit. This is because he loves basketball and he has served as president for the last four years. Sadly, while he could not boast of major achievements, that he supervised the successful hosting of an FIBA Zone 11 Tournament in Liberia demands a great amount of respect.

But at the same time, not everyone will appreciate your contribution and it is therefore important to understand that there are times one must let things go and move on.

Admittedly, those who have been at logger heads with Anderson’s administration are stakeholders who spend their resources to develop basketball and as a result their opinion must not be overlooked.

This is where the Ministry of Youth & Sports comes in. Interestingly, Minister Eugene Nagbe recently resolved a long standing conflict among members of the Federation of Liberian Youths, and therefore I request his intervention to resolve the impasse in basketball.

There must be compromises and give and take offers. Someone must be able to look at the future of basketball and take some decisions and the Ministry of Youth & Sports, in collaboration with the Liberia National Olympic Committee must agree to take a concerted but rescue decision to end the frustration of those who love the game and cannot stomach its degradation.

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