By Onochie Anibeze, Berlin
Amaka Ogoegbunam is a super Nigerian athlete. In July, she was a sensation at the African Junior Championship in Mauritius .
She won gold in  the 200m, 400m hurdles and 100m hurdles.

To prove what a complete athlete she is, the wonder girl joined the 4×4 relay team and won the gold. She became the face of the championship and Nigerians back home especially board members of the athletics federation celebrated the emergence of another star.

But Amaka has proved everybody wrong. Until she clears herself, the International Amateur Athletics Federation (IAAF) maintains she is a cheat and the athletics governing body has asked her to leave the Nigerian camp here in Berlin . Result of the doping test conducted in Mauritius was positive and she became the third Nigerian in the World Championship here to be adjudged unclean after Gloria Kemasaude and Vivian Chukwuemeka.

“It is unfortunate but I’m not surprised because many athletes at the National Sports Festival in Kaduna were using drugs,” Sunday Bada, the technical director of the athletics federation said.”

The news of Amaka’s doping scandal worsened the situation in Nigerian camp with many of the athletes either sick or injured. The fact that they arrived here without reserves underscores poor judgment of officials who selected the team. They are now almost playing cards on those to run the relays, where Nigeria anchored their hopes before now. Nigeria ’s only hopes here.

Nigeria will run three relays – 4x100m and 4×400 for women and only 4x400m for men as the men’s team did not qualify for 4x100m relay.

But with Kemasaude, Amaka out on doping grounds, Blessing Okagbore, Ajoke Odumosu out on health grounds, Godday James out on injury the Nigerian officials must be gnashing their teeth on what has become of their team here.


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