The Nigeria Athletics Federation (AFN) has taken full responsibility for the disqualification of ten Team Nigeria athletes from the ongoing 2020 Tokyo Olympics.
In quest to put in place appropriate measures to comply with Rule 15 of the Anti-doping Rules of World Athletics, (AFN) president, Tonobok OKowa has taken proactive steps to avoid future occurrences by appointing Prof Ken Anugweje as the head of the Medical and Anti-Doping Commission of the Federation.
On Wednesday, the Anti-doping Unit of World Athletics disqualified ten Nigerian athletes from participating in the 2020 Tokyo Olympics for their inability to undergo three compulsory out-of-competition tests within 10 months. This affected ten American Collegiate athletes in the Team Nigeria to be disqualified from the Competition.
In a statement signed by the AFN President, Tonobok Okowa, the Federation admitted the responsibility for the lapses and promised Nigerians that steps have been taken to forestall future occurrences, the statement reads in part; “The Athletics Federation of Nigeria has put in place appropriate measures to comply with Rule 15 of the Anti-Doping Rules of World Athletics. All our athletes resident in Nigeria and who qualified for the Olympic Games completed the three mandatory tests. Most of our top athletes resident in the USA also completed their tests. However,a few athletes in the American collegiate system were tested, but those tests were deemed not to have complied with WADA sample collection and analysis standards. It must be noted that no Nigerian athlete tested positive to prohibited substances.
“Also to note is that 12 top Nigerian athletes have been cleared and are eligible for the Tokyo 2020 Olympics.
“The AFN bears responsibility for any lapses that may have occurred during the process and reassures Nigerians that our performances will not be negatively impacted.
“The President of the AFN, Chief Tonobok Okowa has taken proactive steps to avoid future occurrences by appointing Professor Ken Anugweje as the head of the Medical and Anti- Doping Commission of the Federation.”