The Kenya Basketball Federation (KBF) President Paul Otula has castigated decision by former player Dennis Opiyo Achiego alias Dikembe to stop KBF premier league which had started a few weeks ago.
Dikembe filed a case at the Sports Disputes Tribunal (SDT) stopping the progress of the league on grounds of non-registration of teams taking part.
But in a rejoinder, the long serving sports stakeholder Otula while speaking to KBC Digital noted that registration is a process and not a one-off exercise terming the injunction as a hurdle to paralyse livelihoods of many young Kenyans who rely on sports for daily bread.
“Registration is a process,just like CBC where you come up with rules and policies but during implementation you come across challenges. For example, UoN Basketball can’t register their team yet their mother institution is a registered centre of higher learning. They say you produce audited accounts yet some self-supporting clubs who rely on handouts don’t have an accountant. Sports is a livelihood to many people who are on scholarship program in various private academic institutions so an injunction paralyse their learning.We are grateful to the government and NOCK for their continued support to the game and these cheap politcs should be kept away in distracting this milestone which will see our 3×3 Basketball qualify for Paris Olympics next year in Paris ” noted Otula.
Kenya Ports Authority (KPA) men and women teams defended their Premier League titles last season.
Strathmore University Blades head coach Tony Ochieng’ is optimistic of a good showing courtesy of new signings.
“I was very happy with my new signings; they did well by racking up good stats despite being their first show.I want to encourage them to keep playing better. Containing Ulinzi’s offense was no mean feat, and I believe they are now getting the confidence they need to be successful in the top flight,” Ochieng said
The 2022-2023 leagues ended in June despite starting as early as April 2022, the most prolonged league ever in the history of the KBF.
Otula who returned back to the country days ago from FIBA World Congress in Manilla,Philippines reiterated his commitment of supporting the development of the sport through his experience and international connections.
Speaking while meeting German former professional basketball player and a special advisor for the Dallas Mavericks of the National Basketball Association (NBA) Dirk Nowitzki,the former Principal of Maseno School and Mang’u high among others lauded the growth of the game locally.
“Our sport is tremendously getting to another level and we will keep partnering with relevant stakeholders to help actualize this amazing feat.Those who thrive on sideshows to hamper this development we want to tell them their days are numbered because our government led by Sports CS Ababu Namwamba won’t tolerate this.Over 2000 players earn a living directly or indirectly from basketball. Recently our 3×3 earned kshs 600k for being silver medalists in the just concluded Africa Beach games in Tunisia” he added
Otula a respected educationist, sports personality, coach and administrator says the development of basketball as a sports discipline has been as a result of deliberate strategy they put in place to invest in the sports from secondary schools and estates.