Nicholas Bett of Kenya after winning men's 400m hurdles final on Day 4 at the 2015 IAAF World Championships in Beijing, China / Photo credit: Getty Images for the IAAF

The African Athletics Journalists Association (AAJA) and Athletics South Africa (ASA) have expressed their condolences on the passing of Kenyan former World 400m hurdles Champion Nicholas Bett.

A statement issued on behalf of the AAJA by the conveners of the group, Sifiso Cele and Yomi Omogbeja, to Athletics Kenya (AK) and the Bett's family reads:

"On behalf of the African Athletics Journalists Association (AAJA) we wish to express our sincere condolences on the passing of your athlete, the former World 400m hurdles champion Nicholas Kiplagat Bett.

"As an important stakeholder in our sport in Africa, we are extremely saddened by the news of the sudden death of Mr Bett, who passed away on Wednesday morning in a car accident in Nandi, Kenya, a day after returning from 21st CAA African Senior Championships in Asaba, Nigeria.

"We commiserate with the Bett's family, including his twin brother, Aron Koech, who is also an athlete and was part of the Kenyan 4x400m team that won gold at African Senior Championships in Asaba on Sunday.

"We pray that the Lord grant Aron, his family and also the wider Kenyan Athletics community the fortitude to bear this irreparable loss. We had hoped he will live to play a bigger role continent’s athletics."

Meanwhile, the Athletics South Africa (ASA) has also expressed sadness by the news of the sudden death of the Kenyan athlete.

“This is sad news and most difficult to swallow,” pointed out a saddened Aleck Skhosana, the President of ASA.

"It is a big blow to African athletics, to Kenya and the world. In particular, we had expected him to grow to become one of the best in the coaching of 400m athletes in benefit of Kenyan and all athletes in the continent and beyond upon retirement.

"We remember him also for winning the bronze medals at the African championships in 2014 in the 400 Hurdles and 4x400m Relay.

"We express our deepest condolences to his twin brother Aron, the Bett family, Athletics Kenya and the rest of the nation for this tragic and unexpected loss."