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Published On: Sun, Aug 3rd, 2014

Heads to roll over Amalaha’s drug shame – minister

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Chika AmalahaBy Albert Akota

The Sports Minister and Chairman of National Sports Commission (NSC), Dr Tammy Danagogo has spoken of his emotional trauma over teenage Weightlifter Chika Amalaha who was stripped of his gold medal after committing an anti-doping violation in the Commonwealth Games in Glasgow.

The Minister who was dumb-struck by the disgrace that was meted to the country has also vowed that heads would roll over the teenager’s dilemma by those who should have saved Nigeria from the global shame suffered in Glasgow.

Chika Amalaha has therefore been disqualified from her event in the Games, with her result in the Women’s Weightlifting 53 kilogram competition nullified and her gold medal awarded to Dika Toua from Papua New Guinea.

‘’My heart bleeds for this 16-year-old girl. She looks too innocent to commit such an offence. She is naïve. It’s so unfortunate because it was this same girl that did so well in Gabrone, Botswana. And she was tested and was certified clean. We must get to the roots of this and the coaches and our anti-doping officials have questions to answer. Why didn’t they do their job before coming here to disgrace Nigeria?’’, a visibly pained and angry Danagogo asked.

Chika Amalaha’s A and B samples confirmed the adverse analytical findings of amiloride and hydrochlorothiazide, both prohibited as diuretics and masking agents under class s5 of WADA’S Prohibited List.

“For a young girl like this, we had good plans for her. She is still in shock over what happened to her. She ignorantly took what she took for weight reduction. It is devastating to me and definitely we’ll look at the level of involvement of her coaches, officials, crew and our anti-doping officials. They ought to have detected this before coming to disgrace Nigeria here.

It’s disappointing that we have highly placed anti-doping officials who did not do their jobs. It is embarrassing and severe punishments will be meted to those officials either for their involvements or negligence as a deterrent. This disgrace is not only on one girl but on the whole of the contingent and the nation. Enough is enough’’, the Minister warned.

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