Kenya braces for WADA ban as Tuesday deadline approach
05 April 2016, 15:20
Nairobi (Xinhua) -- Kenyan Olympic officials are holding on to hope, the country will be given a lifeline despite missing to pass a new anti-doping law required by World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) by Tuesday' s deadline.
With the parliament in recess for another two weeks, Kenya will not pass the bill seeking to criminalize doping and enact the Anti-doping code.
Kipchoge Keino, the National Olympic Committee of Kenya (NOCK) Chairman said Kenyan youths deserve a chance to be at the Olympics and any other international competition, because they train hard and run clean.
"We hope there will be no ban. We have done our part as sports officials, the remainder is in the government' s hands and we can do little to influence that. We have shown our commitment," he said in Nairobi on Monday.
Olympic 800m Champion David Rudisha, who is training for the Rio Games title defence, said it will be in vain should Kenya athletes be denied participation because of a mistake that is not their own making.
Rudisha criticized Kenya' s government for failing to do the work to get the country' s anti-doping program up to scratch.
"We were given enough time to do all these things. I don' t understand why these people are not treating the matter with a lot of seriousness. It' s really unfortunate because the ball was thrown to them - the government and the (sports) ministry," Rudisha said.
"But for us athletes, we will continue training as if nothing bad is about to happen. Putting a lot of energy into the training is all we can do and when the clearance is given, we will be ready to take up our positions and defend this country in Rio Olympics."
Kenya' s parliament went on a two-week recess Thursday without passing the anti-doping law, meaning it likely won' t be in place when WADA' s compliance review committee meets over Kenya next week.
Kenya was already given that new deadline after missing a Feb. 11 date to pass legislation and properly set up and fund its new anti-doping agency.
The country came to the limelight three years ago for doing nothing to curb doping, which was 43 cases reported in the last three years alone.