The House of Representatives has summoned the minister of sports and youth development, Sunday Dare, to appear before it as it commences an investigation into the disqualification of 10 Nigerian athletes at the Tokyo 2020 Olympics.
The resolutions followed the adoption of a motion by Babatunde Ayenj, lawmaker representing Ijesha South federal constituency, during yesterday’s plenary.
The House then mandated its committee on Sports to investigate the immediate and remote cause that led to 10 Nigerian athletes’ failure to comply with the Athletics Integrity Unit (AIU)’s rules that requiring them to undergo three no-notice out-of-competition tests in a 10-month period leading up to a major event.
The minister is to brief the lawmakers on the level of Nigeria’s compliance with extant regulations set by the World Athletics (WA)’s Athletics Integrity Unit (AIU).
The House, however, enjoined the Federal Ministry of Youth and Sports Development to put necessary measures in place to ensure compliance with extant regulations at both local and international competitions.
Ayeni noted that the Nigerian delegation to the Tokyo Olympic Games fared well in terms of performance, thereby raising the country’s rating of the comity of Nations.
The lawmaker recalled the incident of 20 July 2021, where the Integrity Unit of the World Athletics barred 10 Nigerian athletes from competing in the Tokyo Games for failing to meet required out-of-competition doping testing.
He, however, expressed concerns that despite the huge funds being made available yearly for the regulatory agencies in the sports sector, adequate efforts have not been made to get Nigeria into the category where they would be deemed to have made significant improvements in anti-doping tests.