The Athletics Federation of Nigeria (AFN) has expressed shock over the provisional suspension of Team Nigeria’s top athlete and medal prospect, Blessing Okagbare, for a doping rule violation.
However, Okagbare who won her 100m heat with 11.05 seconds to reach the semifinal on Friday, was suspended by
the Athletics Integrity Unit (AIU) after a sample collected from the sprinter tested positive for
human ‘Growth Hormone’.
Furthermore, The Athletics Integrity Unit (AIU), which is the independent body created by the World Athletics that manages all
integrity issues for the sport, announced the decision. According to the body, Okagbare tested positive for
Human Growth Hormone.
The AIU also collected the sample from Ms. Okagbare during an out-of-competition test on 19 July. The WADA-accredited
a laboratory that analyzed the sample notified the AIU of the adverse analytical finding at mid-day
Central European Time yesterday, Friday 30 July.
However, The athlete was notified of the adverse analytical finding and of her provisional suspension this morning in Tokyo.
She was to participate in the semi-finals of the women’s 100m this evening.
The AIU will make no further comment on this matter at this time.” the AIU said in its statement.
Reacting to the news, the Athletics Federation of Nigeria, AFN, said it received with great shock the press release
by the Athletics Integrity Unit, suspending Blessing Okagbare for a doping rule violation.
Finally, The Federation, in a statement, says it is in the process of obtaining the relevant details of the announcement
after which issuance of full reaction will follow.
Growth Hormone is a non-specified substance on the 2021 World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) Prohibited List
and a provisional suspension is mandatory following an adverse analytical finding for such substance under
the World Athletics Anti-Doping Rules.
By Taiyelolu A