Nigeria’s track and field runner, Divine Ododuru, was on Thursday handed a six-year ban by the World Athletics’ Athletics Integrity Unit (AIU) for a doping violation.
Oduduru was suspended as a result of a verdict from the World Athletics Disciplinary Tribunal that was established to investigate allegations of two potential Anti-Doping Rule Violations (ADRVs) by AIU.
The AIU on its website said Oduduru who was linked to his compatriot Blessing Okagbare was found guilty of both possession (Rule 2.6 of the World Athletics Anti-Doping Rules; ADR) and/or use or attempted use of multiple Prohibited Substances (Rule 2.2 ADR).
Oduduru, in the judgement dated September 18, which was signed by Anna Bordiugova, did not test positive for any banned substance.
He was, however, alleged to have been implicated in a WhatsApp message between Okagbare and her supplier, Eric Lira where his compatriot mentioned “Divine” and “we” while discussing.
“The Athlete has committed ADRVs under Rules 2.6 and 2.2 ADR. The violations shall be considered together as one single first violation,” the statement read.
“A period of Ineligibility of six (6) years is imposed by the Panel upon the Athlete commencing on the date of the Decision. The period of Provisional Suspension imposed on the Athlete from 9 February 2023 until the date of the decision shall be credited against the total period of Ineligibility.
“The Athlete’s results from 12 July 2021 until the date that the Provisional Suspension was imposed, on 9 February 2023, shall be disqualified with all resulting consequences including the forfeiture of any titles, awards, medals, points and prize and appearance money.”
Oduduru was also ordered to pay World Athletics $3,000 “as contribution towards the legal fees and other expenses incurred in connection with these proceedings”.