The LBA boss said Liberia failure to honor the FIBA U-8 championship qualifier in Abidjan, Cote d’Ivoire which kick-off Saturday, June 23, 2012, will taint the image of the country in the ‘Globe of Basketball.’
Mr. Anderson disclosed that the total cost for the entire trip including fines (penalties) for the country failure to honor past regional basketball tournament, is US$49,000.
The basketball boss divulged that all efforts for the intervention of the National Oil Company of Liberia (NOCAL), Cellcom, Sime Darby-Liberia, Chevron amongst other companies to rescue basketball from ignominy, which is not a “political sports” proved futile.
“The SOS call comes at a time when the U—18 national Basketball team is expected to travel to the Ivory Coast to honor the African version of the FIBA U—18 championship qualifier in Ivory Coast.
“We are appealing to Chief Patron of Sports President Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf, other meaningful basketball enthusiasts as well as business institutions to come to our aid to avoid being fine and risk losing technical and logistical support,” Mr. Anderson stated.
Meanwhile, fans and stakeholders have urged the Government as well as basketball enthusiasts and concessional companies to help the U-18 basketball team travel and participate in the regional tournament. They argued that basketball, which is Liberia’s second most popular sports, should be supported; to encourage the over 50,000 youths are actively engage in the game.
The fans and stakeholders intoned that failure of Liberia participation in the tournament signified that indeed football is truly a “political sports,” which can therefore only be supported, while the other sports are insignificant and those who involved are as well insignificant to the over 3.5 million population.