By Jerry Asiegbu
The captain of Team Nigeria to the 2007 All Africa Games in Algiers, Algeria, Olumide Oyedeji, has appealed to sports administrators to do away with politics in the administration of sports in Nigeria. He said sports should be run as sports devoid of politics and personal gains as this is the only way Nigeria would reap from the efforts of its committed sportsmen and women. Olumide, a professional basketball player with Bayamon Vaqueros team, Puerto Rico, spoke to Sports Vanguard at the National Stadium, Surulere, venue of of the 10th Olumide Oyedeji Future Stars Hoops Camp.
The former Dynamo Moscow Basketball team player said basketball is far behind in Nigeria and as a way out suggested that people who would run it better and develop the business aspect of it should be engaged. He said that he has singlehandedly sponsored the camping for the 10th year running apart from the aid he receives fro Afrab-Chem Limited, promising to continue with the project as a way of developing grassroots basketball and leading the kids aright as they are the future of this country.
Olumide, who has given scholarships to over 15 people since the 10 years the project started, including Churchill Odia, Solomon Tat, Nurudeen Adepoju and Ibuok Idongesit, promised to award more scholarships for basketball and academics in the United States of America.
Over 300 people are participating in this yearâ€™s camping, which included nursery, primary and secondary school pupils and students, with five foreign and 25 local coaches.
The Osun State-born 6ft 10′ basketball player said the camp which opened Monday will end on Saturday, while the Oshogbo camp will open on Monday, September 7.
One of the participants, Ojo Riduwan, who said this is the second time he is taking part in the camping, is hopeful that one day he will play in the NBA.