Nigeria may have fumbled in the London 2012 Olympics, making it one of the worst in recent years, but the nation have a new reason to be compensated perhaps, as the Sydney 2000 International Olympic Committee (IOC) awarded Nigeria with the men’s 4x400m relay gold medal.
The United States, who were the original winners of the gold, were disqualified because a member of their team – Antonio Pettigrew, confessed to taking performance enhancing drugs during the Games. However, Pettigrew was found dead in his car in 2010. Though there were no confirmations for cause of death then, an autopsy report later ruled it as suicide by overdosing on a drug used in sleeping pills.
The Executive Board disqualified Pettigrew since August 2008 but delayed making a final decision on reallocating medals till all investigations on an American doping scandal were complete. The Nigerian team, who originally finished second, was now awarded gold while the Jamaican and Bahamas team who came third and fourth, were given the silver and bronze medals respectively.
Sadly, the decision came too late for Bada, who died suddenly, of a suspected cardiac arrest, in December 2011, after collapsing at the National Stadium in Lagos.
"The day before he died I called him to talk about the medals, so it's sad we've lost him. The IOC should have made this a priority, it's very frustrating," Monye, a member of the 4x400 gold medal team said.
"It was sad we didn't get to hear the Nigerian national anthem during the Olympics, but especially for my friend Sunday. He's not here to get the medal. That in itself is sad."
Congratulations to the Nigerian team made up of Clement Chukwu, Enefiok Udo-Ubong, Jude Monye, and the late Sunday Bada, who died last year
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