WADA serious about getting Kenya banned over doping inaction

Fri Nov 6, 2015 8:03am EST
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By Drazen Jorgic

NAIROBI (Reuters) - The World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) is stepping up efforts to get Kenya banned from international competition for four years unless the nation seriously tackles doping by its athletes, the chairman of Kenya's Olympic committee said on Friday.

Dozens of Kenyan runners have been caught doping in the past few years, tarnishing the reputation of the east African country famed for its middle and long-distance runners.

WADA and other officials have voiced frustration over the years that Athletics Kenya (AK) has not cracked down on doping, despite frequent promises that it would do so.

Kipchoge Keino, a Kenyan running great and chairman of the National Olympic Committee of Kenya (NOCK), said WADA was "seriously considering" recommending Kenya to be banned from all competitions for four years, including the 2016 Rio Olympics.

"It is no longer just a threat," Keino told reporters in Nairobi after returning from United States where he met WADA officials.

"They think Kenya is sweeping doping issues under the carpet.

"The ADAK (Anti-Doping Agency of Kenya), Athletics Kenya and Government must meet immediately to confront this issue or else we are in big trouble. Things are that bad."

Keino said WADA questioned why Kenya had not taken action against Joyce Zakari and Koki Manunga, two Kenyan runners who failed doping tests at the world championships in Beijing in August. In September, two more Kenyan athletes were suspended for doping.   Continued...