Nigerian sprint champion, Blessing Okagbare has been levelled with two more disciplinary charges after being charged with an anti-doping case during the Tokyo Olympics.
During the Tokyo Olympics, she was 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 19th July in Slovakia and reported to the AIU on 30th July.
This matter was publicly announced on 31st July when Ms Okagbare was provisionally suspended. She was scheduled to participate in the semi-finals of the Tokyo 2020 women’s 100m but was unable to participate due to the suspension.
Following the first charge, the Athletics Integrity Unit (AIU) have levelled two more charges against her. According to the statement by AIU, she was charged with the presence and use of a prohibited substance following the detection of recombinant erythropoietin (EPO).
AIU’s statement reads; “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.
Ms Okagbare was notified of the adverse analytical finding on 20th August.” The last disciplinary matter levelled against the Nigerian sprinter is her refusal to co-operate with the AIU’s investigation into her case which is in accordance with Rule 12 of the World Athletics Anti-Doping Rules.
“It is alleged that 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 statement adds.
However, according to the statement, she denied all the charges levelled against her and has requested that each of them be submitted to a hearing before the Disciplinary Tribunal.
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In July 2021, Okagbare was suspended from the Tokyo Olympics 100 Metres semifinals event as the Athletics Integrity Unit (AIU) confirmed that she tested positive for a banned substance, Growth Hormone.
The Athletics Federation of Nigeria (AFN) immediately announced it was in the process of obtaining the relevant details of the announcement related to doping and provincial suspension of the Nigerian track and field athlete.
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