Over the month of April Kenya’s parliament (both the National Assembly and the Senate), the Ministry of Sports, and the Presidency burned the midnight oil to pass the Anti Doping Authority of Kenya bill, as part of efforts to stave off the dreaded WADA ‘non-compliance’ status.
After its May 2nd meeting, in which this was among several items on the agenda, WADA decided to declare Kenya ‘non-compliant’ anyway. Reason being that the bill that was passed was described as ‘a total mess.’
Considering that two other deadlines had passed before Kenya finally met the third deadline, this decision is more of a shock than it probably should be.
This is a severe blow for the Olympic aspirations of a country, who in ~60 years of representation at the games only has one medal that did not come from track and field (RIP Robert Wangila).
WADA’s ‘non-compliant’ recommendation will now pass to the International Olympic Committee, and the International Association of Athletics Federations, for a final decision on whether or not Kenya’s track and field athletes can show up at the Olympics or not.
If Kenya’s track and field contingent are absent from Rio 2016, then the nation’s medal hopes will lie with an under-resourced and neglected boxing contingent, the Sevens rugby team, and a Hodge podge of individual practitioners of sports like shooting, archery, swimming etc and (if they make it through the last global qualifier) women’s volleyball.
Just a confirmation that Kenya were given one more extension to get the vitally important ADAK bill passed, gazetted and the Anti-Doping Authority off the ground. The bill itself is already being debated on the floor of the house, so Kenya should beta this deadline for once
The compliance of the Anti-Doping Agency of Kenya (ADAK) was also discussed and the CRC concluded that the current situation was not in compliance with the 2015 Code, since the bill, policy and ADAK rules have not yet been formally adopted. The CRC decided that unless the bill, policy and ADAK rules are formally adopted by 2 May 2016, its recommendation to the WADA Foundation Board will be to declare the ADAK non-compliant. […]
Kenya were required by the World Anti Doping Authority to bring our fresh legislation on a new Anti-Doping Authority, that is up to international standards. After the typically Kenyan buck passing between track and field stakeholders, and government officials on the other. the Anti Doping Authority of Kenya Bill landed on the floor of the house just days before the second deadline for passing the bill (April 5th).
Kenya is already on thin ice, having missed a February 19th deadline to get this same bill passed, and is in a sense playing catch up, to meet the full setb of compliance issues that stand between Athletics Kenya and a clean bill of health that ill put to rest the fears that Kenya will be going to the Olympics without its world conquering athletes.
Throw in the personal plea of globally renowned Athletics legend, philanthropist and Athletics Kenya chair Kipchoge Keino, and you would think our August house would move mountains to get this one piece of legislation passed? Well maybe they have better things to do than that.
Perhaps the house will break with tradition and get this one bill passed, or they will run the gauntlet of seeing how WADA will react to yet another missed deadline. There really is no hurry in Africa.