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Taskforce report paints a dark picture of the situation

Kenya has been placed in the top-three positions globally in matters doping, a situation World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) Director of Intelligence and Investigations Gunter Younger terms very serious for the country.

Younger was speaking at the conclusion of a two-day stakeholders’ meeting held in Nairobi where the governing body’s investigative unit delivered a report from its Kenya Project taskforce in collaboration with the Anti-Doping Agency of Kenya (ADAK) and the Athletics Integrity Unit (AIU).

“We take the doping practices in Kenya very seriously and have been working hard to identify their extent and nature in Kenyan athletics as well as trying to work out the best possible response.

We believe that a strong, unified, multi-stakeholder approach is key to advancing clean sport in Kenya,” said Younger.

According to the Kenya Taskforce’s findings, doping in the country is different from other doping structures discovered elsewhere in the world as it is unsophisticated and does not appear to be institutionalised.

“The doping practices of Kenyan athletes are unsophisticated, opportunistic, and uncoordinated and there is no evidence of an institutionalised system. Based on the substances detected, Kenyan athletes most commonly use nandrolone and EPO.

Kenyan athletes are also insufficiently educated on doping and/or willfully blind as to the consequences of doping,” the report indicates.

With the findings, ADAK chairperson Japhter Rugut has called for concerted efforts in fighting the menace that seen Kenya placed in the WADA doping watch.

“We have made noticeable strides in the fight against doping but more needs to be done. Since we have zeroed in on the most abused substances, we have embarked on a journey to ensure that there is controlled access to the substances,” Rugut said.

ADAK has partnered with Pharmacy and Poisons board to help control the access to the two substances.

Additionally, all athletes’ medical records will form part of the investigations in any doping cases to ascertain whether the athletes had any medical conditions requiring the use of the said substances.

Changes have also been made on the athletes’ privacy code and contrary to previous practices, names will be released immediately findings are out without necessarily waiting for the appeal period to expire. Rugut intimates that a list of 14 athletes that have been sanctioned will be released today.

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