Ongoing financial constraints have forced the Namibia Basketball Federation (NBF) to withdraw its men and women’s teams from the upcoming Afro-Basket Zone Six Qualifiers slated for Zimbabwe this month.
Namibia was set to join the likes of Angola, Botswana, Lesotho, Malawi, Mozambique, South Africa, and hosts Zimbabwe at the competition, but the NBF has since confirmed to this publication that they have withdrawn from the qualifiers due to a lack of funds.
The qualifiers are set to take place from 20 to 28 February in Bulawayo, Zimbabwe, and NBF secretary general Titus Mwahafa has admitted that it is a sad situation for the country and for the players, who had prepared hard and were looking forward to the event.
“Yes, we have pulled out of the competition because we don’t have the financial means to support or enable the teams to compete in this very important competition. We are in need of money to cater for air tickets, accommodation and meals as well as other little expenses,” he explained.
Mwahafa expressed regret that young Namibian basketballers will miss out on a lifetime opportunity to gain much-needed exposure and showcase their talents on a much bigger platform, saying efforts should be redoubled to avoid similar situations in the future.
“It is sad that many of our potential talents might not get the chance to play on that stage again. This is going to have a huge impact on the talent that have been preparing for this competition. We, however, still have other events coming up later in the year and we will work hard to ensure that we compete in the other upcoming tournaments,” said Mwahafa.