Elias Gora, a former sports official, said on Wednesday that athletes like Tobi Amusan had a responsibility to do the right thing at the right time.
Gora, who used to be Secretary-General of the Nigeria Olympic Committee (NOC), said this in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) after the Athletics Integrity Unit (AIU) suspended Amusan.
NAN says that if the ban isn’t lifted, Amusan could miss the World Athletics Championships in Budapest, Hungary, from August 19 to 27. The global body has denied reports that Amusan was cleared to compete in the championships.
The AIU is in charge of keeping track of anti-doping measures in athletics around the world. This is to protect the purity of the sport and keep things fair for all athletes.
Amusan’s troubles began when AIU banned her for missing three drug tests in a year, which is a big deal and gets you suspended for two years.
The Athletics Federation of Nigeria took Amusan out of the race because she is being investigated by the AIU for doping.
“Should we now blame the federation? I don’t think so. She is an adult who knows what is best for her. I wouldn’t want to blame the federation for that; her address is there, and she put herself in a very hard position.
“She has to pay the price by missing the World Championships, which are the most important. It’s bad for Nigeria, especially for her, to miss the mark when it counts.
“As a well-known athlete, the federation was supposed to keep an eye on her commitment to the world body and anti-doping rules, but she can choose whether or not to show up,” he said.
Gora, who was the head of the Indian team at the 2010 New Delhi Games, said that taking part in the World Championship was still the pinnacle for any respected athlete.
“AIU has your information, and those people always try to get in touch with you. So Tobi did this to herself, even though she knew what the rules were and what would happen. “I hope the rest of the contingent does well,” he said. (NAN)