Athletes laud AK conference as fight against doping feature prominently


Newly elected national Olympic committe -Kenya (NOCK) president Paul Tergat (L) is congratulated by his ...
Newly elected national Olympic committe -Kenya (NOCK) president Paul Tergat (L) is congratulated by his Athletics Kenya counterpart Paul Tuwei after being declared winner during National Olympic Committee (NOCK) election held at Panari hotel in Nairobi Kenya on September 28, 2017. Photo/Sportpicha.

In Summary

  • Athletes have lauded Athletics Kenya for introducing athletes’ annual conference that ended at a city hotel on Saturday.
  • The three-day event brought together athletes; - present and former -  as well as the industry stakeholders with the doping menace featuring prominently in the deliberations.
  • Speaker after speaker  extolled on the athletes to refrain from the vice which is threatening  the future of the sport after Kenya was placed in Category-A of countries where doping is at a high risk.

Athletes have lauded Athletics Kenya for introducing athletes’ annual conference that ended at a city hotel on Saturday.

The three-day event brought together athletes; – present and former –  as well as the industry stakeholders with the doping menace featuring prominently in the deliberations.

Speaker after speaker extolled on athletes to refrain from the vice which is threatening  the future of the sport after Kenya was placed in Category-A of countries where doping is at a high risk.

Mathew Kisorio who has been banned before in relation to doping, New York marathon champion Mary Keitany as well as former Olympic champion Wilfred Bungei all took to the podium with powerful messages to their fellow sportsmen urging them to run clean.

Also, the athletes benefited from training on matters such as taxation, conducted by the Kenya Revenue Authority (KRA) officials, importance of investment and a host of other pertinent issues.

Career development, seen as a major challenge to athletes was also aptly captured by former athlete, Prof Mike Boit who is now a lecturer at Kenyatta University urging the sportsmen to take education seriously.

A host of athletes who spoke to Citizen Digital lauded AK for organising the event.

“I have learnt a lot especially on matters to do with branding… and most importantly on doping,” said World U-20 5,000m champion Edward Zakayo.

“The conference was awesome. We have been taught on various topics which are very important to the life of an athlete,” World 1,500m silver medalist Timothy Cheruiyot said.

“This is a good step by AK to educate us especially on issues of doping so that we can maintain the name of Kenya high in athletics like before,” said two-time World marathon champion Edna Kiplagat

“The conference was good, I would urge fellow athletes to be attending these seminars because there is a lot to learn,” observed the 2017 World Cross Country silver medalist Alice Aprot.

Apart from athletes, coaches such as Bernard Ouma who trains the likes of world 1,500m champion Elijah Manangoi and Timothy Cheruiyot also hailed the initiative.

” I would like to thank AK for coming up with this conference because we couldn’t celebrate while we are facing serious crisis in doping.  I have also acquired knowledge on other areas like taxation and investment,” said coach Ouma.

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Story By Gilbert Kiprotich
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