Deported Rotich to face CID probe says Wario

Cabinet Secretary Dr. Hassan Wario fields questions at the Olympics Village in Rio-de-Janeiro, Brazil. PHOTO/...
Cabinet Secretary Dr. Hassan Wario fields questions at the Olympics Village in Rio-de-Janeiro, Brazil. PHOTO/Waihiga Mwaura

Cabinet Secretary of Sports, Arts and Culture, Dr. Hassan Wario, has announced Sunday that Team Manager, Major (Rtd) Michael Rotich, will face investigations by the Directorate of Criminal Investigations (CID) after being expelled from the Rio 2016 Olympics.

The official plunged the Kenyan team into a new doping crisis when he was caught on camera by undercover investigators from German TV, ARD and British publication, Sunday Times, asking for a 10,000 pound (Ksh1.32m) bribe to alert potential cheating athletes on when drug testers would visit them.

“He must go home now. We will have no mercy on anyone who is suspected of doping. I have advised Nock to look for the first ticket to send Major Rotich home.

“We have forwarded his name to the CID who will investigate him as a source of information,” the minister told Citizen Digital in Brazil.

Later the Ministry put out a lengthy press statement that accused the ARD/Sunday Times investigative team of engaging in a witch hunt against the country while stressing investigations would be launched into the claims.

“While the details of the expose are under review, the Ministry reads mischief in the article. The story comes just two days after WADA announced that it has removed Kenya from its non-compliant list—a move which vindicated Kenya’s commitment to ensuring doping plays no part in our sports and athletics.

“Moreover, this is not the first time that such allegations have been levelled against Kenyan Athletes during the Olympic period. In 2012 the ARD published a similar story, just ahead of the London Olympics. Yet to date, none of the allegations they made then have been substantiated,” the communique stated.

“Last month, the ARD and Sunday Times collaborated in the publication of yet another doping story. In good faith, Kenya promptly launched investigations into that expose which are, even now, underway.

“However, based on the evidence collected thus far, there is reason to believe that the two publications may have coerced unscrupulous individuals into forging documents and falsifying information on doping among Kenyan and International athletes.

“Today (Sunday)’s story, leads us to wonder why the Sunday Times withheld such serious information from the relevant Kenyan authorities, thereby jeopardising investigations. Their motivations in releasing today (Sunday)’s story, are therefore suspect,” it went on.

The ministry stressed every measure had been taken to ensure the country entered a clean team at the Rio 2016 Games.

“Doping is a crime and Kenya recognises that. But this crime exists at an individual level: it is not a culture within the country, nor is it endemic, and with help from the world’s anti doping authorities, we are urgently applying the full extent of the law to drive this crime out of Kenya.”

According to investigative journalist, Hajo Seppelt, Rotich, the retired soldier who was named the head of the track and field delegation was filmed by the ARD agreeing to accept bribes to warn a fake British running team on  upcoming tests.

The Athletics Kenya (AK) South Rift boss was part of the Kenyan delegation that marched with the team at the opening ceremony on Friday.

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