By Ben Efe, Brazzaville, Congo
Following her decision to skip the 2015 All Africa Games, the National Sports Commission and the Athletics Federation of Nigeria have placed a ban on sprinter, Blessing Okagbare; excluding her from representing the country, at the 2016 Olympic Games in Rio, Brazil.
Okagbare, had a dismal outing at the IAAF World championships in Beijing, China. She claimed that injury forced her out of the competition, where Nigerians expected her to win a medal having run the third fastest time of the season in the 100m.
After the Beijing meet, Okagbare told officials of the AFN not to expect her in Congo. But amazingly, she showed up in Zurich, full of life and energy. She ran 10.98 seconds in the Diamond League, much to the chagrin of athletics officials who gave her the benefit of the doubt because of her purported injury.
The NSC and the AFN examined the circumstances bordering her decision to dock the AAG, and came to the conclusion to deny the athlete any chance of appearing in next year’s Olympics.