The Kenyan government has vowed to speed up amendments to the 2016 Anti-Doping Act in order comply with the World Anti- Doping Code.
Kenya’s delegation led by Cabinet Secretary for Foreign Affairs Amina Mohamed and her Sports counterpart Hassan Wario met with World Anti-Doping Agency (Wada) officials led by Director General, David Howman in Montreal, Canada on Tuesday to review the May 12 decision by Wada’s Foundation Board that declared Kenya non-compliant despite having passed the Anti-Doping Bill (2016) into law last month.
According to a statement from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, both sides agreed on a road map that will see the country become fully compliant with the Wada Anti-Doping Code.
Wada further made it clear that Kenya will not be barred from competing in the 2016 Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil despite her shortcomings.
“Kenyan athletes will continue to participate in international sport and should have representation in this year’s Olympic Games in August,” read part of the statement from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.
Kenya will need to adopt the negotiated amendments as agreed with Wada, present the amended clauses to Parliament, get Presidential assent and then present the amended Bill passed by Kenya’s Parliament to Wada.
The body will then 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 Law, acknowledging 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.
Mohammed reiterated Kenya’s unwavering commitment to working 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,” she said.
Kenya, an athletics giant, missed two Wada deadlines to show it is tackling cheating in sport. The country won 11 medals at the London 2012 Olympics and topped the table at the World Championships in Beijing last year with 16 medals.
But the country has become mired in doping and bribery allegations, with more than 40 athletes failing drugs tests since 2011. Wada placed it on a ‘watch-list’ of nations at risk of breaching its code and gave it until April 5 to comply.