Tag Archives: Wada

WADA salutes Paris court for the five year jail sentence of Papa Massata Diack

The World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) has welcomed the decision by the Paris Court of Appeal for upholding convictions against former International Association of Athletics Federations (IAAF) marketing consultant Papa Massata Diack and Habib Cissé, former legal advisor to the IAAF president, on charges of corruption linked to the Russian doping scandal.

The court also found his father the former President of the IAAF Lamine Diack guilty for accepting €3.2 million ($3.8 million/£2.75 million) in bribes from athletes suspected of doping, to cover up their test results and let them continue competing, including in the 2012 Olympics in London. Diack was sentenced to four years in prison; two suspended, though he remained under house arrest, and was later released on bail and allowed to return home to Senegal, where he died in December 2021.

Massata was found guilty of siphoning off $15 million (£11.5 million/€12.5 million) to his companies when his father was the president and together they were ordered to pay IAAF €5 million (£4.6 million/$5.9 million) in damages for breach of trust.

The WADA report read in part, “Based in part on information provided by WADA, Mr. Diack and his late father, former IAAF President Lamine Diack had been found to have accepted bribes in order to cover up doping cases of Russian athletes so they would be free to compete at major athletics events, including the Olympic Games and IAAF World Championships. A number of other defendants, including Mr. Cissé, had also been found guilty of a range of related offences. As part of the original ruling, WADA, which was an interested party to this case, was awarded € 200,000 in costs and damages.
The WADA President, Witold Bańka welcomed the decision, which is a victory for clean sport. “WADA welcomes this decision, which is a victory for clean sport. It finally brings to an end a long-running case that started on the basis of information shared by WADA with the French authorities, who opened a criminal investigation in 2015. This case shows the importance of WADA’s collaboration with law enforcement agencies around the world as we seek to ensure that those who engage in corruption or try to cheat the system face the appropriate sanctions.”

Nigeria’s U.S.-based junior athlete caught in doping scandal cries for help

Before he travelled to America on scholarship a few years ago, high jumper, David Aya, promised his auntie, who, despite her health challenges, was able to raise some money for the junior athlete to travel, that he would do ‘small jobs’ in America to raise money to support her.

Rather than keeping to his promise of studying and doing ‘some small jobs,’ Aya allegedly started doping and was caught.

“I am so concerned about my auntie, who gave me money to travel,” Aya said, while narrating his ordeal.

The world seems to have crashed on him after he tested positive to banned substances. He has been slapped with a four-year career ban, the scholarship he won to study in an American university has equally been suspended, and now, he is pleading with Nigerians to come to his aid to pay for legal services to reduce or quash the ban and resume his career and studies.

According to Mainlandmetronews.com.ng, Aya was handed a four-year ban, a long time for a high jumper to be out of action. Being out of action for that long could lead to weight gain, which could make it difficult for him to return to fitness after serving his term.

“As a first offender and a junior athlete, I believe that four years is long,” Aya said. “I am not yet an elite athlete, I have not been to the Olympics yet. It is harsh and I want Nigerians to help so that I can pay for legal counsel.”

Aya revealed that he volunteered to do the dope test on his own, because when the Nigerian junior team was going to the World Athletics Junior Championships in Colombia, they were ordered to undergo dope tests before they could be part of the team.

“I did three dope tests and it was the middle one that gave me this problem. Before we went to Colombia, nobody told me I had issues with my test. I did not know anything. It was when I got to America that they sent me a letter that I had failed a test and my world came crashing.”

The high jumper said: “I was like banging my head on the wall trying to know exactly where things had gone wrong, because I know very well the implications of using drug enhancing performance.

“It was then a doctor asked me if I had eaten pork. I told him yes. He said to me that pork meat can cause a spark of steroids in the system if it is mixed with some other healthy supplement I might be taking.

“A nutritionist friend of mine also asked me the same thing. All the vitamins I have been taking are not on the WADA list, and so, it was a rude shock to me. I didn’t have all this information.

“They say ignorance is no excuse in law. I just hope that I can get a good lawyer that can help get me out of this mess,” he said. Speaking on Aya’s case, Athletics Federation of Nigeria Medical and Doping Director, Prof. Ken Anugweje, described what happened to Aya as regrettable.

“But rules are rules made by the World Athletics and these rules are adapted from WADA.

“It is based on the substance found in the system more than any other consideration. Some substances warrant only public warnings, but what was found in Aya’s body warranted the lengthy ban. These are prescribed sanctions by the athletics body.

“The claim that he ate pork is a long story because it is no longer valid. It is a claim that has been made before by athletes who tried to hold on to something that has to do with clenbuterol.

“In the past, some countries used steroids to fatten their cows and pigs. Those are no longer an excuse. Where did he eat the pork and who sold the pork to him?

“We know Aya very well. He used to come to the High Performance Centre in Port Harcourt to train. It is very unfortunate what happened to him,” Anugweje stated.

Victoria Ohuruogu in trouble after training with banned boyfriend

Victoria Ohuruogu is being investigated for training with her boyfriend – who is currently serving a doping ban. In an investigation conducted by The Times, the Team GB 400m star, 29, was photographed training alongside her long-term partner Antonio Infantino, who was born in England but now represents Italy.

It was announced in April that the sprinter, who specialises in the 100 and 200m and competed at the Tokyo Olympics, had been banned for failing a drugs test. The couple, who have been in a relationship for 10 years, were spotted at Willesden Sports Centre in northwest London completing two 150m sprints by a reporter at The Times.

Under article 2.10 of the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) code, an athlete is banned from association “in a professional or sport-related capacity with any athlete support person who is serving a period of ineligibility”. The UK Anti-Doping (UKAD) organisation opted not to comment on any active investigation on Ohuruogu.

Infantino told The Times: “Victoria has been my partner for over 10 years, and we live together and share a car,” he said. “I was running my own 150m session that Saturday. I still like to work out but have no intention of returning to track professionally. Vicky had a longer 400m session with her training partner, set by her coach [Christine]. As far as my lawyers have made me aware, I am allowed to be around Victoria, but not advise or support professionally.

“Christine has given Victoria her old training diaries and has done an incredible job since our old coach passed away last year. I do not wish for what happened with me to implicate her and we have been very careful for me not to be involved in any professional capacity.

“I do not coach, write the programme or advise in any sense. I was not at any of her major championships, as Christine attended these. I didn’t want my own problems with the sport to impact her — and now this has. I believe I have been careful not to breach what I understand to be the rules.”

UK Athletics have issued a statement regarding the photographs which read: “Athletes who compete for GB & NI and members of the world-class programme receive regular anti-doping education which outlines their responsibilities towards clean athletics and adhering to the WADA code.

“We will be communicating with the athlete concerned to ascertain the facts before making any further comment.” This is not how Ohorugu would have wanted her 2022 to end given the breakthrough year she has had on the track.

She ran a 400m personal best of 50.50 and claimed a Commonwealth silver medal as well as relay bronze at the World Championships in Eugene and the European Championships in Munich.

Mark Kangogo banned for three years

The Athletics Integrity Unit (AIU) has banned Mark Kangogo of Kenya for 3 years for the Presence/Use of Prohibited Substances (Norandrosterone & Triamcinolone acetonide), which is a breach of the World Athletics Anti-Doping Rules.

The 33 year-old was busted at the Sierre-Zinal race in Switzerland, on August 13, after providing the urine Sample for the In-Competition test. He won the race in a time of 2:27.31 ahead of Andreu Blanes of Spain and becoming the first African runner to win the historic village-to-village race that includes 7,200 feet of climbing and 3,600 feet of descending.

Kangongo who also holds the Luxembourg Marathon course record of 2:12.10 that he set in 2018, will start serving his three years sentence from September 9,  2022 and all his results from 13 August 2022 have been disqualified.

Kangogo belongs to the Kenya Sky Running Project Camp and is coached by coach Julien Lyon from Swiss who made an official statement distancing himself from the athlete.

Kenya was place on the World Anti-Doping Agency’s (WADA) compliance watch list in 2016 along with Ethiopia, Morocco, Nigeria, Bahrain, Belarus, and Ukraine.

Mark Kangogo suspended for doping

The Athletics Integrity Unit (AIU) has provisionally suspended Mark Kangogo for the Presence/Use of a Prohibited Substance (Norandrosterone & Triamcinolone acetonide) (Article 2.1 and Article 2.2), which is a breach of the World Athletics Anti-Doping Rules.

Kangongo who holds the Luxembourg Marathon course record of 2:12.10 that he set in 2018, adds to the list of 20 Kenyan athletes, who have now been sanctioned by AIU this year alone.

Kenya was place on the World Anti-Doping Agency’s (WADA) compliance watch list in 2016 along with Ethiopia, Morocco, Nigeria, Bahrain, Belarus, and Ukraine.

Cannabis to remain banned substance in athletics

Cannabis will remain a banned substance in sport after a review by the World Anti-Doping Agency (Wada).

American sprinter Sha’Carri Richardson was ruled out of the Tokyo Olympics after receiving a one-month ban for using the drug last year.

Wada agreed to review the cannabis ban after requests from “stakeholders”.

But it decided on Friday at a meeting of its executive committee to maintain the ban because the use of the drug “violated the spirit of sport”.

The ban for recreational drug use by athletes who test positive out of competition was reduced from two years to one to three months last year.

“Wada is aware of the diversity of opinions and perceptions related to this substance around the world, and even within certain countries,” director general Olivier Niggli said.

“Wada plans to continue research in this area in relation with [its] potential performance enhancing effects, its impact on the health of athletes and also in relation to perceptions of cannabis from athletes, experts and others around the world.”

In the UK cannabis is a class B drug and possession carries a penalty of up to five years in prison and an unlimited fine.

The organisation also announced that the painkiller tramadol is to be added to the list of banned substances for athletes in competition from 2024. ”

Tramadol abuse, with its dose-dependent risks of physical dependence, opiate addiction and overdoses in the general population, is of concern and has led to it being a controlled drug in many countries,” Wada said in a news release.

WADA Chief Operating Officer passes away

The World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) has announced that their Chief Operating Officer Frédéric Donzé, has passed on.

The 50 year-old who joined Wada in 2002 as its media relations and communications manager passed on after a short a short illness.

In 2011, he became director of WADA’s European regional office and relations with international federations in Lausanne, a position currently held by Frenchman Sébastien Gillot, before being appointed director of operations in 2016.

“For 20 years, Fred has been a cornerstone of the life and soul of WADA,” said WADA Director General Olivier Niggli. His extraordinary work ethic, intelligence and authenticity made him an inspiration to his colleagues and a confidant to athletes and all those involved in the fight against doping around the world. His passing is devastating for all of us who had the great fortune to know him, to work alongside him and to call him our friend. ”

Donzé was one of the longest-serving members of the WADA executive, joining the agency in 2002 as its first media director. He served as director of the European office before returning to headquarters in 2016 as COO.

Frustrated by Athletics Kenya Kiptomo on road to change citizenship

Frustrated by Athletics at the World Championships and Commonwealth Games trials, Brian Kiptomo Otongolo, not his real name has decided to change his citizenship to another country where federations respect the will of athletes.

Otongolo, just like many Kenyan athletes who missed to compete at the trials after missing the required qualification, especially missing on drug test by Anti-Doping Agency of Kenya (ADAK).

“At the moment, after missing to compete at the trials, am changing my citizenship. Am in the process of doing that. I don’t think of coming back to Kenya, hopefully I will compete against Kenyans wearing another country’s jersey,” said Otongolo.

He said that he is Kenyan but he is not going to represent Kenya at all and he would do everything in his power to train hard than before to compete against Kenyans and beat them.  And to change citizenship, there are many options like filing a petition that costs a lot of money.

“Basing on my experience, those who are going to represent Kenya are not the best because I was the best but I was not selected that means someone who was not the best is going to compete for Kenya and am going to beat them because am 100% sure athletes know me very well. If everything goes on well as planned I will meet with them at the championships,” explained the frustrated athlete.

He says that the current economy has put pressure on him and his colleagues, making life expensive traveling all the way from the USA, Japan and other nations to come for trials, with the flight being so
expensive, it costing about 3,000 dollars, which he says it wastage of time in traveling, money wastage and for students, they miss classes, which is frustrating.  For students, when classes are going on, you have to get permission to travel to compete for Kenya

“If one travels and get the opportunity to run and get into the team, it won’t be waste of time and money. But right now, where am I headed to, what is the purpose of me competing for Kenya? I will have that mindset like am not a Kenyan and I will say a patriot? Right now I don’t think like being a patriot. I feel like am not a Kenyan because as an athlete it requires time, sacrifices to reach certain level like running away from poverty but all over a sudden when you go up, someone presses you down. For upcoming athlete, this is so frustrating. Am 100% sure that one may give up on training like going for trials and then when I qualify, still I may not represent the country,” he said.

Last weekend he explained that he met face to face with his first experience ever that all disciplines were finals. He said that initially AK used to have heats to semis then finals, but last weekend was a deal
to lock out other athletes especially those from abroad who wanted to make Team Kenya because some of athletes who live in the USA, Japan and other countries were not tested by ADAK.

“AK said that that for one to compete at the nationals, one has to be tested by ADAK only which was frustrating because most of athletes travel across the globe just to come and compete in Kenya but when they come back, things change because they are not tested by ADAK,” he said.

He said that the rules will affect medal prospects for the country in middle and long distance especially for the young athletes, whose names were ejected from the final list even after qualifying. He said that
they should have been given a chance to compete with the global stars in future but AK shut their dreams.

“My frustration was that the federation should give all athletes a chance to compete especially the young ones. Or if they knew that they were not going to compete, they should have told them that there are no
chances for you guys and no need for trials. On my behalf and others, ADAK through the federation they could have told them earlier that all athletes from abroad they did not need to come to Kenya for trials. Such athletes should be send a memo or being tracked by ADAK or alternatively, they should send someone to such countries to track them. Every time there are track events like in the USA or japan, the federation or adak should plan for them to be tested,” he said.

“They should support these young ones who have a great future. We don’t know what the future holds for them. Someone like Eliud Kipchoge was struggling before he was put into the limelight. Before you get to the top, you should have come from bottom and we athletes we understand and we follow the footsteps of some people like me I follow my sister (name withheld) who was my role model. I saw her perform well and I wanted to be like her. And when I talk to her, she used to tell me that she used to run barefoot. Even me, I never used to wear shoes while running until I got a scholarship to study abroad,” he said.

Despite producing documents to prove that he was tested by World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) the federations insisted that he was not going to run at all costs.

“My frustration came in when I was told that I had never done any drug test by ADAK but I was tested by WADA not ADAK for almost like six times this year. I tried to show AK my drug test documents but they rejected and told me that I should have been tested by ADAK and that is how my dreams were shuttered,” he said.

“When I went to ADAK’s representative at the Kenyan trials, they told me they don’t have the power to test an athlete but they should get names from AK because Adak don’t know athletes and AK know athletes. After AK gives the names to ADAK, ADAK then tests them according to the names from AK,” He added.

Otongolo competed in four Track and field meetings but he was never tested too. He competed in Mumias, Kisumu and two in Nairobi but never got tested. He alleges that he even gained interest and went to ADAK to be tested but he was told me that to get tested, he need to go through some questions, which he did and felt happy that it was the right time to be but it never happened.

“They lied to us that they have to get a list from AK and I would have gone there to ask for testing may that could have been the short cut,” he expressed.

He also lamented that athletes’ representative Milach Chemos, who was an athlete and understand the needs of athletes did not bother to check on how we were fairing on.

“I met with athletes’ representative Milcah Chemos, send her text messages and calls, she takes long time to reply. I know her as an athlete and she understands the journey of athletes and should be the first person to respond to athletes’ calls. She knows that these are athlete so and so in the USA and Japan and they were not shortlisted because they did not have drug test, have qualifying time and documents
from WADA or any drug testing body but she doesn’t do that all,” he narrated.

He alleged that Chemos has no concern on athletes where she should be helping athletes to get to another level.

“Athletes depend on her, we expect more from her. We expect her to do more and she should come up with an idea to help upcoming athletes,” he said.

Humphrey Kayange Appointed to World Anti-Doping Agency

Kenya rugby legend and the National rugby sevens captain Humphrey Kayange has been appointed as the Executive Member of World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA).

WADA president Witold Banka confirmed the appointment saying that he was delighted with the prospect of working with the Kenyan rugby player.

“I wished to follow up formally with regards to your recent appointment to the WADA Executive Committee (ExCo), as a representative of the IOC Athletes Commission, for a three-year term commencing on June 1, 2022,” read Banja’s letter to Kayange.

“I look forward to working with you in your capacity as an ExCo member, and, of course, in your continued role as a Foundation Board member as well.”

Kayange’s appointment to WADA ExCo is seen as a well-calculated move to inject momentum into Kenya’s relentless campaign and fight against the vice in the country.

WADA’s Executive Committee (ExCo) and Foundation Board (Board) met in Cairo, Egypt, on May 18 and 19 for their first meetings of 2022.

Khayange who was recently decorated with the Order of Golden Warrior by President Uhuru Kenyatta is also the CEO of Team Kenya for the Birmingham 2022 Commonwealth Games.

Russia won eight gold medals at 2012 Olympics. Now it’s two, after another ban

Russian race walker Yelena Lashmanova has been banned by the Athletics Integrity Unit (AIU) for the use of prohibited substances which is a violation of the World Athletics anti-doping rules.

 Lashmanova will be stripped of 2012 Olympic and 2013 World titles, marking the sixth Russian track and field gold medal from the London Games to be taken away due to doping.

The 29 year-old accepted a two-year ban, retroactive to March 2021, and all of her results being disqualified from Feb. 18, 2012 to Jan. 3, 2014.

The charges were based on data and evidence from probes that began several years ago into institutionalized doping in Russia, the AIU said on Monday.

Lashmanova was previously banned for two years after a positive drug test in 2014 and has not competed outside of Russia.

Russia originally won 18 medals, eight golds in track and field at the 2012 Olympics.

Lashmanova’s ban means that the total medals stripped from Russian athletes will be seven medals and two golds.

The other Russians previously stripped of 2012 Olympic track and field gold medals for doping include, race walker Sergey Kirdyapkin, high jumper Ivan Ukhov, hammer thrower Tatyana Lysenko, 800m runner Mariya Savinova and 3000m steeplechase runner Yuliya Zaripova.

China’s Qieyang Shenjie is in line to be upgraded to gold in the women’s 20km race walk. Chinese athletes would sweep the medals should they be reallocated. The three Chinese walkers originally finished third, fourth and sixth.

Russia’s athletics federation was suspended by World Athletics in 2015 following a World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) report containing allegations of state-supported doping, which Moscow denied.