ABIDJAN (Cote d’Ivoire) – FIBA Africa on Saturday unveiled its new headquarters in the Ivorian largest city of Abidjan.
The milestone event took place on the margins of the first-ever FIBA Central Board meeting held in Africa, and was attended by more than 150 people.
Those in attendance included: Mr François Amichia, Representative of Cote d’Ivoire’s Prime Minister, Mr. Danho Paulin, Cote d’Ivoire’s Minister of Sports and Recreation; Mr Moussa Sanogo, Minister of Budget; Mr. Horacio Muratore, FIBA President; Mr. Andreas Zagklis, FIBA Secretary General; Mr. Hamane Niang, FIBA Vice-President and FIBA Africa President; Mr. Turgay Demirel, FIBA Vice-President and FIBA Europe President; Mr. Abdoulaye Seye Moreau, former FIBA President and FIBA Hall of Fame Inductee; Amadou Gallo Fall, Managing Director of NBA Africa and Mr. Yao Ming, FIBA Basketball World Cup 2019 Global Ambassador.
They were joined by members of FIBA’s Executive Committee and Central Board and distinguished guests.
FIBA Africa’s new headquarters is built on a 4,000 square meter plot of land and all of the construction work was carried out by Ivorian companies.
The two-floor building consists of: a welcome esplanade, a conference room, a Lagoon Edge terrace, a Hall of Fame, offices, a recording studio, a multi-purpose room, a restaurant and a non-covered cursive terrace.
On this important day for all African basketball stakeholders, FIBA President Horacio Muratore thanked the Ivorian gouvernment for its support .
“Nearly 58 years after its creation, FIBA Africa owns now its house of basketball. I would like to emphasize the crucial role played by the Ivorian Government in offering hospitality to our organization for the construction of this Headquarters. From the beginning of the talks, we felt the great interest of your country in hosting the House of African basketball.”
On his side, Mr Niang paid tribute to one of the key contributors who made this achievement possible – former FIBA Secretary General Patrick Baumann.
“I would like to praise the meeting of Alphonse Bile and Patrick Baumann which allowed this architectural jewel to come into being,” he said. “As a great visionary, Patrick felt that the progress of the game in Africa would go through the construction of a headquarters of international standards.That is the reason why, with all of his strength, he supported this project which is also so dear to our Regional Director, Alphonse Bile.
“My dear Alphonse, you believed in this project which made us doubt more than once. You fought for it to be accepted and today you can be proud of yourself. Kudos and congratulations to you.”
MrZagklis stressed the central role that the new headquarters will play in helping Africa achieve its basketball potential.
“This new headquarters plays an important role in Africa, a continent with great passion and potential for our game,” he said.
“We have witnessed very promising signs of what African Basketball can achieve.
“This evolution comes together with our NBA partnership for a league in Africa and, as of today, with a brand new Regional Office. And what a better place to celebrate basketball than a 3×3 court where we are standing right now. We look forward to seeing Basketball further develop in Africa.”