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Viral Video of Slow Untrained Somali Runner Nasra Abukar Leads to Nepotism Allegations and Suspension of Athletics Chief

A Somali runner’s dismal performance at the World University Games in China has caused a wave of criticism and controversy, as it was revealed that she was untrained and not a qualified athlete.

Somali Athletics Federation Was Accused of Nepotism After Viral Video of Untrained Somali Runner

Nasra Abukar Ali, 20, competed in the women’s 100-meter race on Monday, finishing in 21.81 seconds, more than 10 seconds behind the winner, Brazil’s Gabriel Mourāo. A video of her race went viral on social media, showing her lagging far behind the other runners and barely breaking into a jog.

Many Somalis expressed their anger and embarrassment over Ali’s participation, accusing the Somali Athletics Federation of nepotism and incompetence. Some alleged that Ali was a relative of the federation’s chairwoman, Khadija Aden Dahir, who selected her to represent the country without any proper training or qualification.

“The Ministry of Youth and Sports should step down. It’s disheartening to witness such an incompetent government. How could they select an untrained girl to represent Somalia in running? It’s truly shocking and reflects poorly on our country internationally,” Elham Garaad, a Somali journalist, tweeted. Take a look at viral Nasra Abukar video.

Khadija Aden Dahir Was Suspended After Nasra Abukar Running Video Went Vrial

The Ministry of Youth and Sports responded by suspending Dahir and launching legal action against her for “abuse of power, nepotism, and defaming the name of the nation” in the international arena. The ministry also apologized for the incident and said it was not aware of how Ali was chosen to compete.

Minister of Youth and Sports Mohamed Barre Mohamud said: “The Ministry of Youth and Sports firmly declares its intention to pursue legal action against both the chairman of the Athletics Federation of Somalia and individuals responsible for the falsification of the Somali University Sports Association”.

The Association of Somali Universities also denied any involvement in sending Ali to the games, saying it did not authorize or endorse any runners to participate.

The World University Games, also known as the FISU Games, is an international multi-sport event for student-athletes held every two years. This year, it is taking place in Chengdu, China. More than 10,000 athletes from 170 countries are competing in 18 sports.

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