The Nigeria Volleyball Federation (NVBF) on Monday decried the shortcomings experienced in the federation in 2012, saying it was due to lack of sponsors for its programmes.
The Vice President of the federation, Ebenezer Morakinyo, said "An assessment of 2012 for the federation may consider it as a dwindling year, filled with many challenges. "The major events that will improve the lot of our volleyball players in Nigeria were not enough to keep the athletes seriously busy.
"Getting corporate sponsorship was a big challenge for the sport as some scheduled competitions had to be put off. This did not really help the sport as our main objective is basically to grow the game in Nigeria to world standard," Morakinyo said.
The year, according to Morakinyo, however, took a turn around with the appointment of a Brazillian coach, Augusto Sebastian, to train the male and female national teams. "There was also the distribution of N25 million worth of volleyball equipment like balls and nets to randomly selected 20 secondary schools nationwide in July.
"The distribution by the NVBF, in conjunction with the International Volleyball Federation, was to promote the passion for volleyball at the grassroots," Morakinyo added. In his projections for 2013, he said that getting corporate sponsors to fund competitions and the rebuilding of the national teams were the federation's major priorities.
"The federation's major interest in 2013 is to sharpen the knowledge of the game in Nigeria by organising coaching programmes for coaches, including those in the schools," he said. The vice president, however, noted that the South-South Challenge, the Junior Championships and the Chief of Staff Naval Open, were held this year and would be continued.
He added that all hands were on deck for the federation to have its first championships for male and female teams sometime in March in Abuja. "Other championships for junior players to look forward to in 2013 will be in Jigawa, Kano and Kwara," he said. According to him, the federation is at present finalising arrangements with the state governments for necessary logistics to make the events successful.