JOHANNESBURG, South Africa, November 14 – The global doping policing body gave a lukewarm welcome Wednesday to a Kenyan inquiry into doping allegations against its athletes, after criticism of a lack of action.
“I welcome what appears to be some action,” said World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) president John Fahey at a global conference against performance-enhancers in sports.
Kenya named a 12-member task force on Monday to investigate a German media report that the blood-boosting drug EPO and other doping products were readily available to local athletes.
But the Kenyan delegation at the anti-doping conference in Johannesburg had not spoken to WADA about it, said Fahey.
“There’s been no formal communication for what they propose,” he told journalists.
“I look forward to finding out the details.”
WADA had been asking Kenyan authorities to investigate for 18 months with no action on assurances, Fahey said earlier in the week.
He hinted then that WADA might probe doping allegations itself under new doping rules that will give the body new teeth when it comes into effect in 2015.
Since January last year, increased doping tests have netted 17 Kenyan cheats, though none of them big-name athletes.
The allegations have cast a shadow over Kenya, famed for its distance runners who hold world records from the 800m through to the marathon and where running is a major source of national pride.