Some Nigerian track and field athletes have been disqualified from competing at the 2022 World Athletics Championships.
The 18th edition of the World Athletics Championships is scheduled to be held in 2022 in Eugene, Oregon, United States from July 15–24, 2022.
The affected athletes will not represent the country due to alleged failure to comply with the out of the competition testing (OCT) requirement.
They blamed the Nigerian government for the disqualification.
The aggrieved athletes said they were punished for an unknown offence committed by some corrupt officials.
One of them, Ezinne Okparaebo who recently switched her nationality from Norway to Nigeria said, “It has always been my dream to compete for nigeria on the world stage. but, despite reaching the world standard, flying to nigeria alone, switching my allegiance from the us, and mentally/physically preparing myself after my first ever hamstring strain, the athletic federation of nigeria has failed me.
“The negligence and egocentric actions of the minister and other admin have once again overcome the federation which negatively affects the athletes. why am i being told 40 minutes before my flight to oregon, the week of competition, that i’m no longer competing because of their wrongdoings and irrational fear? I have already passed 2/3 drug tests, but for some reason, i am not allowed to do my third test because of “fear of failure”. they speak repeatedly about trying to fix the broken system that is nigerian athletics by firing and hiring all new staff, but the corruption still lives.
“I, unfortunately, will not be competing at worlds or the commonwealth games.”
Born on March 3, 1988, she was Scandinavia’s fastest woman ever over 60m and 100m. Okparaebo has won the 100m national title 13 times. She moved to Norway as a nine-year old and grew up in Ammerud.
She won the silver medal at 60 metres for women in the 2009 European Athletics Indoor Championships and the bronze medal in the same discipline in 2011 European Athletics Indoor Championships.
Another aggrieved athlete, Akintola Alaba said his dreams has been shattered.
Alaba said, “Sadly, I’m going to be out of world championship after I qualified for 3 events(100M,200M & 4*100M) not because I failed dope but because of politics because that’s what it looks like rn; they hid under the umbrella of OCT(out of competition test) meaning I didn’t submit my whereabouts or whatever(been on this shii since march ).
“They already cost me a major championship(that’s they plan ikr)and I knew they know what they doing/did . Thanks to everyone that cared and showed love, really appreciate it Stepping stone to greater things MT on me .”
Alaba broke a 17-year-old indoor record and set a career-best in the 200-metre dash with a time of 20.72 seconds at the C-USA Championship, landing him in first place in the finals in February 2022.
He was placed 14th at the NCAA Indoor Track and Field Championships for a time of 21.49 second in the 200-meter dash on March 11, 2022. He took first place in the 60-metre dash at the C-USA Championship with a time of 6.72 seconds.
saharareporters, new york