Kenya to be declared in breach of anti-doping rules

By Beth Nyaga

Kenya is set to be declared in breach of global anti-doping rules.

The surprise move will mean some of the world’s top athletes are at risk of missing August’s Olympic Games in Rio.

Kenya, one of the major forces in world athletics, has already missed two World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) deadlines to show it is tackling cheating in sport.

Now Wada is expected to rule the country ‘non-compliant’ when its board meets in Montreal on Thursday.

After a series of drugs and corruption scandals, Kenya had been warned to comply with Wada’s rules or face sanctions.

In February, Kenya missed a deadline to pass a law establishing a new national anti-doping agency so that more testing could take place.

Wada placed it on a ‘watch-list’ of nations at risk of breaching its code and gave it until 5 April to comply, with IAAF President Lord Coe threatening Kenya with a ban if it did not pass the bill into law.

Kenya missed that second deadline, too, but was then given until 12 May to make its national agency operational.

Last month, it finally passed legislation that created a new national anti-doping agency, with President Uhuru Kenyatta personally driving the new law through.

It was widely assumed that the measure would satisfy Wada.

However, it can now be revealed that Wada’s compliance committee has recommended that Kenya should be declared in breach of its code.

It will now be up to the International Olympic Committee (IOC) or sport’s international federations to decide whether to ban Kenyan athletes from the Rio Games or any other competitions.

They could come under pressure to do so, amid an unprecedented doping crisis and mounting concern over the country’s lack of action against cheating.

Kenya is dominant at distance running, winning 11 medals at London 2012 and topping the table at the World Championships in Beijing last year with seven golds.

Declaring Kenya non-compliant will be seen as a sign that the organisation is finally getting tough with countries that flout their rules.

In the last few weeks, it has suspended national anti-doping laboratories in Moscow, Beijing, Lisbon and Bloemfontein, raising serious concerns about the effectiveness of drugs-testing in the build-up

Source: BBC Sports