Athletes commend anti-doping education amid AK warning


Three-time World champion Asbel Kiprop praised the joint initiative by Athletics Kenya and ADAK to ...
(FILE)Three-time World champion Asbel Kiprop praised the joint initiative by Athletics Kenya and ADAK to take elite athletes through anti-doping education. (PHOTO/File)

Top elite athletes in the country have urged Athletics Kenya (AK) to conduct more workshops on anti-doping sensitization in a bid to stem the vice that has plagued the sport.

Only about 40 of the 100 athletes invited to attend the seminar in Eldoret honoured the call with the Anti-Doping Agency of Kenya (Adak) warning stern action against those who missed.

The AK had been categorical athletes that failed to show up risked being barred from the National Trials for the IAAF World Championships in London but the threat of that sanction only served to achieve half the attendance.

Most likely spiked by the no-show, the governing body Friday convened a press conference at their Riadha House headquarters to address the media. We will subsequently publish a related article once Citizen Digital compiles the report.

Athletes who attended Wednesday’s seminar said they had benefited from the initiative, which included training on the use of the Anti-Doping Administration & Management System (ADAMS) systems.

“The seminar is very important to all upcoming and active athletes because it’s an opportunity to teach athletes how they can avoid using banned substances. Just like the way they are calling it an educative seminar, it has educated us because there are some medicines that we assumed yet they contained some substances that could be costly to us.

“I would like to urge the AK to conduct more seminars like this especially for the junior athletes who are the most affected,” Asbel Kiprop, a former 1,500m Olympics gold medallist and three time world champion said.

According to AK’s acting Chief Executive Officer Susan Kamau, the main purpose of the workshop was to open new ADAMS accounts.

The ADAMS is a web-based database management system that is available in multiple languages. It facilitates the sharing of information amongst relevant organizations and is designed to increase the efficiency and effectiveness of the fight against doping in sport.

“I am happy that most of those who failed to turn up for the seminars already have their accounts active. But if some of them missed and they don’t have the account, then they will not be eligible for the trials,” Kamau warned.

Kiprop also expressed his disappointment in the case of Rio 2016 marathon champion Jemimah Sumgong who tested positive of a banned substance in an out-of-competition test just before the London marathon in April.

He said such events do no favours to the country that is already under the watch-list of the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA).

“It’s a disgrace not only to Kenya, but also to the athletes and the Olympic Games that we value very much in the world. I even feel bad that one of us became an Olympics champion and then later failed her doping test.

“But now that the seminars are here it helps our athletes to shun away from doping. However, I would also love them to target the doctors especially those who are giving the athletes drugs,” Kiprop advised.

The seminar was graced by Olympics and world champions lad by Ezekel Kemboi, Conseslus Kipruto, Hyvin Kiyeng, Milcah Chemos, Edna Kiplagat and a few coaches lead by David Letting and Richard Metto.

-Additional reporting by John Wanyama.

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