US-based Nigerian basketball player, Chinenye Ogumike has pledged to assist the Nigeria Basketball Federation (NBBF) in the task of developing the game in the country.
The player, who is no longer eligible for Nigeria having played for the United State junior basketball team, lamented her ineligibility, but said that she is ready to contribute in any other way to help in the development of the game in the country.
“I know you guys saw me playing for the USA and you cried. But the main goal is not about which team you play for but it’s about what basketball will do for your life.”
The Huston, Texas-born basketball player said she was surprised to see that basketball has a large followership in Nigeria as they have been made to understand that football has dwarfed every other sport in the country.
“I am happy to be here in Nigeria. We have been waiting for this moment. It’s so amazing to see so many people talk about Nigeria basketball because the country is said to be dominated by football and for other sports to succeed, it must have some followership. So I am excited to see so much followership.”
Chinenye also applauded the passion of the NBBF President, Tijani Umar, saying that the passion he has for the game is contagious.
“I am also so excited for the federation president’s passion for basketball. It is contagious and I am happy with the steps and programme you have, trying to develop basketball in Nigeria,” she said
The United States basketball player noted that her primary mission to Nigeria is to impact Nigeria with wholesome benefits that the game of basketball has given to her and her family in the United States of America.
She said that she is working with a charity organisation whose duty it is to build courts, facilities, deliver lectures and conduct seminars on basketball game.
“I need to preach to the younger once in Nigeria what the game of basketball has done for my life. If I was not a basketball player I probably will not have been in Stanford University one of the top University in the world. I am so blessed to have had those opportunities,” she said.