(ATR) Hamane Niang of Mali is elected FIBA president at the basketball federation’s congress on Thursday in Beijing.
FIBA president Hamane Niang is elected. (FIBA)
The former African basketball president was the only candidate for the position. FIBA operates a rotation system for the presidency, meaning an African president must serve from 2019-2023.
Delegates from 156 National Federations attending the XXI FIBA Congress unanimously elected both Niang and the Central Board members for the next four years.
"I sincerely thank all the National Federations for the trust they have placed in me today. It is with humility that I accept this responsibility placed upon me,” Niang said in a statement.
“I promise to dedicate myself fully to FIBA during my tenure and to serve the interests of our beloved sport across all corners of the world. We are the governing body of basketball and we must continue to play the leading role in developing our sport. Together, we can become the most popular sports community in the world."
Niang was head of FIBA Africa from 2014 to 2019 and a member of the international federation’s Board during the same period.
The 67-year-old, who has worked at the Mali Bank of Development and in the government’s finance ministry, was president of the Mali Basketball federation from 1999 to 2007 before his appointment as sports and culture minister from 2007 to 2011. Prior to his election as Africa’s basketball chief, he was president of the FIBA Africa Council for Finances from 2001 to 2014.
FIBA Congress in Beijing (FIBA)
Ingo Weiss from Germany was re-elected for his second term as FIBA Treasurer.
The 13 newly elected members of the Central Board, along with Niang, Weiss, FIBA Secretary General Andreas Zagklis as well as the presidents of FIBA's five regions will meet for the first time on Sept. 14 in Beijing.
The panel needs to appoint to the Central Board a representative of the National Basketball Association (NBA) of the USA and a representative of the players.
In addition, the board may bring in additional members with full voting rights for the vision, skill and special expertise that they will bring.
The FIBA Congress concludes on Friday evening with the delegates attending the FIBA Basketball World Cup 2019 Opening Ceremony, being held at The Water Cube, the former Beijing 2008 Olympic Games venue.
FIBA's flagship event, featuring a record 32 national teams, will be played in eight Chinese cities from Aug. 31 to Sept. 15.
Seven teams will qualify for Tokyo 2020 from the tournament. The 16 next best classified teams at the World Cup will get the chance to earn one of the last four spots through Olympic qualifying tournaments to be held in early July just before the Summer Games begin. Japan has already qualified as the host country.
Written by Gerard Farek
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