Kipsang, Korir: Bill falls short of WADA standards
Former world marathon record holder, Wilson Kipsang and the 2012 Boston champion, Wesley Korir have supported claims the proposed Anti-Doping Bill is defective since it does not meet the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) standards.
Speaking on Citizen on Monday, Kipsang who is the chairman of the Professional Athletes Association of Kenya (PAAK) and Korir, their spokesman however, backed the call made by Cabinet Secretary for Sports, Arts and Culture, Dr. Hassan Wario, for the entire Athletics Kenya (AK) leadership to step down.
In a terse response to Wario’s attack on interim president, Lt. Gen (Rtd) Jack Tuwei, the federation alleged the proposed Anti Doping Bill that is set to be ready to be brought to Parliament this week was defective and fell short of WADA requirements.
The claim was supported by Kipsang and Korir who said unless the Government gets its act together, Kenya will be banned from international competition and her athletes will miss the Rio 2016 Olympics.
“For sure I have gone through (it) but not so much, but I have seen it does not meet the WADA standards. I think we need to make some amendments and maybe rectify one or two things and it will be okay,” Kipsang who is readying to reclaim the London Marathon title he lost to Eliud Kipchoge last year stated.
“If something is not done now, we shall be banned. This thing is serious and it requires seriousness we are not seeing at the moment,” the London 2012 Olympics bronze winner and two-time London champion added.
Having led PAAK’s 48-hour blockade of AK’s Riadha House headquarters in Nairobi last year, Kipsang said negotiations with the leadership brokered by the Sports Ministry were still in progress.
“What we are basically pushing is to make sure that even retired athletics are in that office because at times we see things done in a wrong way, not because they don’t know but it’s because there have been many changes in athletics which many of the guys there don’t understand much.
“We really want to make sure that many of our guys who have being running and understands sports much better are there so as to address issues affecting athletics,” the 2011 Frankfurt Marathon champion and course record holder stressed.
Korir, who is also the Member of Parliament for Cherangany Constituency, threw his weight behind Wario in his call for the AK leadership to vacate office.
“I totally support the CS about changing the AK. We need to change the AK and not only the people but also change its Constitution which is the problem. The problem is the constitution that is able to keep them there,” the legislator underscored.
“I think we need a new body, a new brand, system, mew everything. We cannot keep the same people that were there, using the same system under the corrupt leadership.
“We’ve had four people suspended, how do we know this people didn’t take part in the corruption cases? We need all of them out, new body and a new constitution,” he added.
The IAAF Ethics Board last November suspended AK president, Isaiah Kiplagat, vice-president and IAAF Council Member, David Okeyo and Easter Branch chairman, Joseph Kinyua to pave way for investigations into embezlement and subverting the doping process.
A fortnight ago, AK CEO, Isaac Mwangi was also suspended following allegations he asked for bribes to reduce doping bans with the four fighting to clear their name.
“While we agree that some of our officials have been mentioned in the scandals and are currently serving suspension; we would like to state that the CS’s statement is not only irresponsible but also quite unfortunate especially coming from the man who is supposed to be spearheading the fight against doping.
“We know the real issue at the moment is the draft from the Anti Doping Agency of Kenya, which doesn’t meet the threshold of the World Anti-Doping Association,” AK said in a statement last Thursday following the clash on live television between Wario and Tuwei during the weekly current affairs Citizen TV show, Cheche.
Report by Paul Kimani
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