Kenya: Save Kenya’s Athletics

EDITORIAL

Kenya faces an unprecedented ban from international athletics competitions because of failure to comply with regulations by the World Anti-Doping Agency (Wada).

For a country whose athletes have over the years won global acclaim for scooping countless trophies for track and field events, this is a despicable situation. It would be almost unimaginable to have our athletes missing from any international competition.

The International Association of Athletics Federations (IAAF) President Sebastian Coe put it succinctly on Wednesday when he warned that he will not hesitate to ban the country from the Rio Olympics in August following failure to meet the February 14 deadline to comply with Wada regulations.

Yet Kenya has been moving ever so languidly to formalise the operations of the local agency even after the Cabinet approved its formation last year. A Bill to set up the agency is yet to be tabled in Parliament. Already, four Athletics Kenya officials including the former president Isaiah Kiplagat are under probe for allegedly abetting doping.

The Government must urgently table a Bill to set up the agency before it’s too late. The fact that Russia has been banned from world athletics because of state-sponsored doping proves that IAAF’s threat to mete out the same punishment to Kenya is not idle.

source: All Africa