Nigerian athlete, Blessing Okagbare, was provisionally suspended after failing a drug test at the ongoing Tokyo Olympics on Friday, July 30.
Okagbare, who is the reigning Nigerian record holder in both the 100m and 200m, finished first in her heat in 11.05 seconds to advance to semi final.
She ran from lane 7, was pitched against British female sensation Asha Philip in heat 6 of the event’s Round 1 who ran 11.31 seconds to finish second.
This is another major setback to Nigeria’s chase for medals during the Olympic as 10 were banned three days ago from participating in the competition.
The Athletics Integrity Unit (AIU), 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.
“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.
The AIU collected the sample from Ms. Okagbare during an out-of-competition test on 19 July. The WADA-accredited laboratory that analysed the sample notified the AIU of the adverse analytical finding at mid-day Central European Time yesterday, Friday 30 July.
The athlete was notified of the adverse analytical finding and of her provisional suspension this morning in Tokyo. She was scheduled 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.
Team Nigeria’s Divine Oduduru has been disqualified from Heat 5 of men’s 100m for a false start at the ongoing Tokyo 2020 Olympics.
Meanwhile, Ese Itsekiri representing the country in the 100 metres at the Olympics qualified for the semi-final after finishing 3rd respectively in his heat.
Itsekiri finished in 10.15 seconds in the first heat.
Divine Oduduru has a personal best of 9.86 seconds.
Before Oduduru’s false start, America’s Fred Kerley had made a movement before the gun but warned.