The Nigeria women’s basketball team, D’Tigress, have apparently been playing with deep hurt against the Nigeria Basketball Federation (NBBF) for some time.
Fresh from their historic feat of winning three consecutive FIBA Afrobasket titles, the D’Tigress players have now broken their silence. As part of their grievances, the basketballers say they are being owed allowances and bonuses.
In a video posted on microblogging site, Twitter .the women outlined the injustices that have been allegedly perpetrated on them by the outgoing board of the NBBF, led by Musa Kida.
The women, who have vowed to boycott the upcoming World Cup qualifiers, have listed the conditions that would make them rescind their threat.
They ask for the payment of the backlog of their bonuses and allowances, an improved welfare package, and to be honoured by the Nigerian presidency for doing the country proud.
The ladies wonder why their historic feat of winning three straight African titles has not warranted being invited to Aso Rock even if it is only for the ceremonial presidential handshake.
A member of the D’Tigress, Promise Amukamara, faulted the claims by the Kida-led NBBF that the team is not being owed any monies.
She said: “This is far from the truth, last time we checked, our allowances stipends, bonuses, training grants, and donations made by banks for players, officials, and volunteers have still not been paid.
Another member of the team, Ify Ibekwe, outlined the monies they are owed.
She said: “We are owed $73,118 by the NBBF, $24,000 by the Ministry for the Tokyo grant, and $100,000 donation from three banks in Nigeria.”
For Ezinne Kalu, she stated that since their General Manager and Team Manager resigned, “they are being marginalised.”
She said “the outgoing president never really shows up in camp and competitions” to boost their morale and when they have significant issues that make him present, “he only provides vague answers like our concerns are not important to him.”
Musa Kida was not in Cameroon but somehow he showed up in Abuja for pictures and political gains,” she said.
The D’Tigress also opened up on the many avoidable distractions that led to their poor outing at the Tokyo Olympics.
The women said that unless their grievances are fully attended to, they would be boycotting the World Cup Qualifiers.