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Kenya makes headway with WADA over anti-doping agency

Kenyan delegation led by Ambassador Amina Mohamed in Montreal, Canada after meeting with the World Anti Doping Agency officials.PHOTO/courtesy
Kenyan delegation led by Ambassador Amina Mohamed in Montreal, Canada after meeting with the World Anti Doping Agency officials.PHOTO/courtesy

NAIROBI, Kenya, May 18 – The Government of Kenya has committed to expedite amendments to the Anti-Doping Agency of Kenya Act as recommended by the World Anti Doping Agency (WADA).

Kenya’s delegation led by Cabinet Secretary for Foreign Affairs and International Trade Ambassador Amina Mohamed, met with WADA officials led by Director General, David Howman in Montreal, Canada to review the May 12 decision by WADA’s Foundation Board to declare the Anti-Doping Agency of Kenya (ADAK) non-compliant.

In a meeting held May 17, both sides amicably agreed on a roadmap that will see Kenya fully compliant with the WADA code as soon as possible, subject to changes that need to be made to the Kenya Anti-Doping Act.

WADA made it clear that Kenya will not be barred from competing in the 2016 Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil despite failing to adhere to WADA rules.

“Kenyan athletes will continue to participate in international sport and should have representation in this year’s Olympic Games in August,” part of the statement read.

In order to fully comply with WADA regulations, Kenya needs to adopt the negotiated amendments as agreed with the World Anti Doping Agency, present the amended clauses to Parliament, get Presidential assent, then present the amended Bill passed by Kenya’s Parliament to WADA.

READ: World Anti-Doping Agency Declares Kenya Non-Compliant

WADA will further present the amended and adopted Bill to its Compliance Review Committee for final review and recommendation to the Foundation Board for approval.

WADA commended Kenya for acting in good faith and demonstrating strong commitment by developing its Anti-Doping legislation, and acknowledged that more than 80 percent of the law was in fact compliant with the Code.

“Kenya was declared non-compliant because certain laws were not consistent with the World Anti-Doping Code. If the laws are amended as agreed today, I have no doubt that WADA’s Compliance Review Committee would recommend that the Foundation Board revoke ADAK’s non-compliance status. I am confident that this can be done very quickly,” Howman said.

CS Mohamed reiterated Kenya’s unwavering commitment to work closely with WADA to achieve compliance.

“A lot of work went into passing and coming up with this bill and Kenya was therefore shocked at WADA’s decision. However, we remain resolute in our commitment to resolving the few outstanding issues.”

“As a world leading sporting nation, Kenya believes in the practice of fair and clean sport. We are proud to be one of the top three African countries to have come up with this type of legislation and providing a learning curve for others to learn from,” she added.

Kenya has already complied with six out of seven pre-requisite conditions for compliance with the World Anti Doping Code, with the only outstanding provision being that ADAK Bill is not fully compliant with the international sporting guideline as proposed by WADA.

Other members of the Kenyan delegation who attended the meeting included Solicitor General Njee Muturi, ADAK’s Chairman James Waweru, ADAK’s CEO, Japhter Rugut, Kenya’s Ambassador to Canada, John Lanyasunya.