Athletics

Nigeria’s women’s 4×100 to lose commonwealth gold over doping

  • Sample A of the athlete is said to have tested positive for anabolic steroids but was not forthcoming on a specific steroid.
  • The team that also included Tobi Amusan, Rosemary Chukwuma, and Favour Ofili took home the gold posting a new African record time of 42.10s.
  • If the affected athlete is found guilty after all samples test positive the Nigerian team will definitely lose the medal and the performance according to World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA).

Nigeria’s women’s 4 by 100m team that participated and won a gold medal at the Commonwealth Games in Birmingham weeks ago is likely to lose their medal after a member tested positive for sample A of a banned substance.

 Nwokocha

Nigeria’s Grace Nwokocha before competing in the women’s 100m heats during the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games that were held in Japan. Photo: AFP

Grace Nwokocha‘s A sample is said to have tested positive for anabolic steroids but was not forthcoming on a specific steroid.

The 21-year-old athlete who is also multiple national champion in 100 meters recorded her personal best of 10.97 seconds in the 100 meters that was set at the World Championships that was held in Eugene, Oregon, USA.

Nwokocha also ran a personal best of 22.44s in the 200 meters and it’s the first time in her athletics career to be linked to any drug-related wrangle.

The team that also included Tobi Amusan, Rosemary Chukwuma, and Favour Ofili took home the gold posting a new African record time of 42.10s.

Nigeria’s Gold medalists Tobi Amusan

Nigeria’s Gold medalists Tobi Amusan, Favour Ofili, Rosemary Chukwuma, and Nzubechi Grace Nwokocha after winning the women’s 4x100m relay final of the Commonwealth Games in Birmingham. (Photo by Glyn KIRK / AFP)

A statement from the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) to the Athletics Federation of Nigeria informed the federation about the development adding that they are still waiting for confirmation of the B sample.

If the affected athlete is found guilty after all samples test positive the Nigerian team will definitely lose the medal and the performance according to World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA).

However, AFN president, Tonobok Okowa seemed unaware of the events, saying he hasn’t heard of any positive test.

“I’m not yet aware of any positive test, but that would be shocking,” Said Tonobok

Close sources to the AFN confirmed that a letter from WADA has been sent to the federation confirming that the president is aware of the development since the start of the week.

Other Nigerian Athletes who have been banned by WADA over doping include Chioma Ajunwa. Ajumwa was the first Nigerian athlete to win a gold medal in 1996 at the Summer Olympics that were held in Atlanta and also the first black African woman to win an Olympic gold medal in a field event.

In 1992, she failed a drug test and which led ban of up to four years.

Mary Onyali was also banned in the same year banned for taking ephedrine. She was the first Nigerian to compete in up to five Olympic Games.

The list also includes Oludamola Osayomi, Christy Ekpukhon, Daniel Effiong, Doris Amadi, Folashade Abugan, Chinazom, Innocent Asonze, Olutoyin Augustus, Clement Chukwu, Osmond Ezinwa and his twin brother Davidson Vivian Chukwuemeka, and Blessing Okagbare-Otegheri.

Okagbare is currently under a 10-year ban after she found guilty of breaching multiple World Athletics anti-doping rules.

Her ban will see her out of the field up to July 30, 2031 but her lawyers are said to be looking into the case.

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