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Somalia Athletics Federation Chairwoman suspended after viral incident

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Nasra Abukar Ali, an untrained 20-year-old female sprinter, took more than 21 seconds to complete the 100 meters race.—insidethegames.com

The Minister of Youth and Sports in Somalia took action against the Chairwoman of the country’s athletics federation following a distressing incident at the World University Games. 

Nasra Abukar Ali, an untrained 20-year-old female sprinter, took more than 21 seconds to complete the 100 meters race, finishing far behind the other participants. A viral video of the race on social media showed her visibly distant from the rest of the field, with the race winner clocking a time of 11.58 seconds.

In response to the incident, Sports Minister Mohamed Barre Mohamud conducted an investigation in collaboration with Somalia’s National Olympic Committee. The findings revealed that Nasra Abukar Ali was neither a sportsperson nor a runner, raising questions about her participation in the event. Consequently, the minister suspended Khadijo Aden Dahir, the Chairwoman of the Somali Athletics Federation, on the grounds of alleged abuse of power, defaming the nation’s name in the international arena, and unspecified charges of nepotism.

Moreover, the investigation exposed a lack of registration for the Somali University Sports Association. In light of these findings, the ministry expressed its intention to pursue legal action against both the Chairman of the Athletics Federation of Somalia and any individuals responsible for falsifying the Somali University Sports Association.

The incident has sparked concerns and discussions within the sports community, as it highlights the importance of fair and legitimate representation in international competitions. The suspension of the federation’s chairwoman reflects the seriousness with which the Somali authorities are treating the matter, emphasising the need for transparency and accountability in sports administration.

Moving forward, Somalia’s sports governing bodies will likely face increased scrutiny and pressure to ensure proper protocols are in place to prevent similar incidents and uphold the integrity of the country’s representation in international sporting events. The focus will be on establishing clear eligibility criteria and maintaining a level playing field for all athletes participating on the global stage.



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