Tag Archives: Blessing Okagbare

Blessing Okagbare was never abandoned in Tokyo, says AFN

An official of the Athletics Federation of Nigeria (AFN) has described as false an allegation by Blessing Okagbare’s sister, Grace that the sprinter was abandoned soon after she was suspended by the Athletics Integrity Unit (AIU) over drugs issues at the Tokyo Olympics Games.

Okagbare was suspended on the eve of her semifinal in the 100m event in Tokyo.

Apart from accusing the nation of abandoning the sprinter, her sister also alleged that Blessing was being forced to accept doping charges instituted against her by the AIU.

However, an official of the AFN told The Guardian yesterday that top officials of the federation as well as those in Team Nigeria nearly ‘stepped out of the boundary’ in Tokyo in their bid to show Okagbare solidarity shortly after the news of her suspension was broken.

The AFN official said: “It is not true that Nigeria abandoned Okagbare as alleged by her sister, Grace. We went contrary to the guidelines in Tokyo in our bid to show our solidarity and love to her. When the news of her suspension was broken, Team Nigeria quickly dispatched some top officials to her. They stayed with Blessing in her room consoling her. Some of them even stayed with her throughout the night.

“Even when Blessing was leaving for the airport, she did not go alone. So, why will her sister point accuse fingers at the AFN and Nigeria that Blessing was abandoned? I can’t also understand why Grace is saying that Blessing is being forced to accept doping charges instituted against her by the Athletics Integrity Unit. Did anybody force her to take performance-enhancing drugs in the first place? Is Blessing still a baby?”

The Athletics Integrity Unit (AIU) had said that it charged Okagbare after she tested positive for human growth hormone and recombinant erythropoietin (EPO).

Source: guardian.ng

Blessing Okagbare charged with three Anti-doping offences

The Athletics Integrity Unit (AIU) has issued charges against Nigerian sprinter Blessing Okagbare in relation to three separate disciplinary matters.

The athlete has been charged with the presence and use of a prohibited substance following the detection of Human Growth Hormone in a sample collected out-of-competition on July 19 in Slovakia.

An AIU statement said: This matter was publicly announced on 31st July when Okagbare was provisionally suspended. She had been scheduled to participate in the semi-finals of the Toko 2020 women’s 100m that day.

The athlete has also been charged with the presence and use of a prohibited substance following the detection of recombinant erythropoietin (EPO) in a sample collected out-of-competition on 20th June in Nigeria.

The AIU requested EPO analysis be conducted on the sample on 29th July and the adverse analytical finding was reported to the AIU on 12th August.

Okagbare was notified of the adverse analytical finding on 20th August. Human Growth Hormone and EPO are non-specified substances on the 2021 World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) Prohibited List.

A provisional suspension is mandatory following an adverse analytical finding for such a substance under the World Athletics Anti-Doping Rules and the athlete remains provisionally suspended. Finally, the AIU has issued a further charge against Okagbare in accordance with Rule 12 of the World Athletics Anti-Doping Rules following the athlete’s refusal to co-operate with the AIU’s investigation into her case.

The athlete failed to comply with a formal requirement to produce relevant documents, records and electronic storage devices, which was issued to the athlete by the AIU on 15th September. The athlete denies all charges and has requested that each of them be submitted to a hearing before the Disciplinary Tribunal.

Shock as another Bahrain suspended for doping Violation

Athletics Integrity Unit (AIU) has provisionally suspended Bahraini marathon runner El Hassan El Abbassi after returning an adverse analytical finding for a homologous blood transfusion following a test at the Tokyo 2020.

The 37-year-old’s sample was collected after the Olympic marathon in Sapporo on 8th August where he finished 25th with a time of 2:15.56 in a race won Eliud Kipchoge.

Homologous blood transfusions involve someone collecting and infusing the blood of a compatible donor while autologous blood transfusions use a person’s own blood that has been stored.

The International Testing Agency (ITA), in charge of drugs testing during the Games, reported the results of the test on Aug. 15 and said that the athlete had the right to have his ‘B’ sample examined.

ITA had also suspended another Bahrainian middle distance runner Alsadik Mikhou for receiving a blood transfusion during the Tokyo Olympic Games.

El Abbassi won gold in the 10,000 metres at the 2014 Asian Games in Incheon, South Korea and a silver medal in the marathon four years later at Jakarta, Indonesia.

Nigerian sprinter Blessing Okagbare and Kenyan 100m runner Mark Otieno Odhiambo were both previously suspended for drug violations.

Alsadik Mikhou Provisionally Suspended for Blood Doping during Tokyo games

International Testing Agency (ITA) has provisionally suspended Bahrain middle distance runner Alsadik Mikhou for receiving a blood transfusion during the Tokyo Olympic Games.

The Moroccan-born athlete competed in the men’s 1,500m heats last Tuesday, but failed to advance as he finished eighth in a time of 3:42.87.

The 21 year-old is the third athlete to fail a doping test at Tokyo 2020. Nigerian sprinter Blessing Okagbare and Kenyan 100m runner Mark Otieno Odhiambo were both previously suspended for drug violations.

Athletes from 16 countries competing in Olympics after CHEATING

Athletes have been competing in Tokyo after cheating by manipulating times and photo-finish pictures, as well as shortening courses.

Competitors worldwide broke the rules to make the qualifying standard for Tokyo, World Athletics investigators have found.

Cheats from up to 16 countries were identified before the Games, leading to eight bans from the Athletics Integrity Unit (AIU).

But some of those suspected of wrongdoing are thought to have made it to Tokyo, having cheated via methods that also included the use of unauthorized field equipment and the illegal use of pacemakers.

The wide network of cheating is expected to have taken in officials from national federations wanting to get their athletes to the Games.

Competing in the Olympics can lead to considerable financial reward, especially for athletes from less wealthy nations. There are also political benefits in having as large a presence as possible at the Games.

‘In preparation for the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games, our team identified, analyzed and investigated potential instances of competition manipulation,’ David Howman, the AIU chair, said in a statement.

‘Thanks to our investigations, World Athletics refused to recognize several questionable qualifying performances. The AIU will continue to investigate these matters to determine if any fraudulent conduct was involved.’

The AIU identified cases of suspicious qualifying performances from 31 athletes across 16 countries in the lead-up to the Games.

Other cases have led to further investigation to determine if cheating took place.

The AIU has had considerable success in bringing sanctions against athletes since it was set up in 2016 under the stewardship of its head Brett Clothier, an Australian former lawyer with a background in sports integrity.

It brought forward the one doping case at Tokyo 2020 when the sprinter Blessing Okagbare, a Nigerian world silver medalist, was suspended after testing positive for human growth hormone.

Blessing Okagbare suspended for doping violation

Nigerian sprinter Blessing Okagbare has been provisionally suspended just hours before she was due to run in the semi-finals of the women’s 100m at the Olympics on Saturday.

The Athletics Integrity Unit announced that Okagbare had “tested positive for human growth hormone” in an out-of-competition test on July 19.

Okagbare, who won Olympic silver in the long jump in Beijing 13 years ago, holds the Commonwealth Games record in the women’s 100m, set in Glasgow in 2014.

ASABA 2018: Kenya settles for 4x100m bronze

Kenya won its first ever Africa 4x100m relay medal as the Kenyan quartet settled for bronze at the Africa Senior Athletics Championships in Asaba, Nigeria on Friday.

The quartet of Eunice Kadogo, Millicent Ndoro, Joan Cherono and Freshia Mwangi held on for the last podium finish place relay in 45.58 seconds.

Five times Africa gold medalist Blessing Okagbare led Nigeria for the gold medal in 43.77 as Cote d’Ivoire settled for silver in 43.77.

Team Nigeria consisting of Joy Udo-Gabriel, Blessing Okagbare, Tobi Amusan and Rosemary Chukwuma got the home crowd cheering to their highest decibes as they brought home the coveted gold.

Kenya’s men’s 4x100m relay team of Peter Mwai, Mike Mokamba, Alphas Kishoyan and Mark Otieno finished fifth to go home empty handed.

Rudisha, Vivian Cheruiyot and Ezekiel Kemboi to be inducted in Hall of Fame

World 800m record holder David Rudisha, four-time world champion Ezekiel Kemboi and Olympics 5,000m champion Vivian Cheruiyot, will be inducted into the Confederation of African Athletics (CAA) Hall of Fame.

The three athletes have one thing in common besides their feats at both national and international, they are all Olympic gold medalists in their respective races.

This accolade will be bestowed at the welcoming Dinner for athletes and officials participating at the 21st African Athletics Championships, Asaba 2018.
The event, organised by CAA and Delta State Capital Territory Development Agency is slated for July 31, 2018 at the Event Center, Asaba.

Nigeria’s golden girl, Blessing Okagbare and her team members who won Nigeria’s 4×200 gold at the 2016 IAAF World Relay in Bahamas will be inducted into the Confederation of African Athletics (CAA) Hall of Fame.

International Association of Athletics Federations (IAAF) President Sebastian Coe, CAA President Kalkaba Malboum and members of his executive committee, State Governor Dr. Ifeanyi Okowa, and top government officials at Federal and State level, diplomats and the LOC led by its Chairman Solomon Ogba will grace the occasion.

Ethiopia follows Nigeria with the highest number of athletes to be inducted. The list includes world record holder and champion Genzebe Dibabaa, Almaz Ayana an Olympics and World Champions and long distance legend Kenenisa Bekele.

Other Ethiopians on the list are, World Champion Tirunesh Dibaba and former world 5000m record holder Mesert Defar from Ethiopia will also be inducted into the Hall of Fame.

South Africa duo of Caster Semanya and Wayde van Nieckert both Olympics and World Champions will also be inducted.

Okagbare breaks 22-year-old African record

Blessing Okagbare on Saturday started her outdoor season with an impressive 22.04secs in her 200m race at the Wes Kittley Invitational Track and Field Meet at the Abilene Christian University, which erased the 22-year-old previous African record of 22.07secs set by Mary Onyali at a Meet in Switzerland in 1996.

Cierra White followed in second place in 23.26secs while Natasha McDonald settled for third in 24.23secs.

Apart from becoming the new African record, Okagbare’s winning time also becomes the new national record in the women’s 200m. Okagbare’s previous personal best in the event was 22.23secs was set at the 2014 Eugene Diamond League.

With her latest exploit, it means that Okagbare now holds the Nigerian records in the women’s 100m (10.79secs) and 200m. Okagbare did not compete in the indoor season, which started in January. The Wes Kittley Invitational was her first competition of the season.

The 26-year-old is one  of the 37 athletes listed by the Athletics Federation of Nigeria to participate at the Gold Coast 2018 Commonwealth Games in Australia, which begins on April 4.

Source: punchng.com