A government minister from Kenya has pleaded with World Athletics not to expel the nation from the sport due to doping cases. According to reports, the country is in danger of being punished after a number of incidents, and 55 of its athletes are currently serving Athletics Integrity Unit penalties (AIU).
The situation in Kenya would be examined during the World Athletics Council meeting in Rome the following week.
Lord Coe has received a letter from Ababu Namwamba, cabinet secretary for the Ministry of Youth Affairs, Sports, and the Arts, assuring him that Kenya’s government is doing everything in its power to maintain the integrity of athletics.
“We cannot allow our nation to be banned because of the actions of some greedy unethical individuals,” Namwamba said.
“We will target and deal decisively with the criminals and their syndicates. We must work together to eradicate doping and cheating from athletics and sports in general.”
Kenya is one of seven nations that the AIU has designated as a “Category A” federation, the category with the highest doping risk. As a result, athletes from these nations must submit to at least three tests in the ten months prior to a major competition in order to compete there.
Its 55 athletes who are currently under suspension are the third-most of any nation with doping cases, after Russia (102) and India (61).
Innocent athletes from Russia were still permitted to compete under a neutral flag until the country’s invasion of Ukraine in February, at which point all Russian athletes, support staff, and officials were prohibited from competing as a nation. Russia has been banned by World Athletics from competing as a nation in athletics since 2015, but untainted athletes were still permitted to do so.
This year, the AIU has fined seventeen Kenyan athletes for a variety of infractions, and eight more have had their eligibility stopped while they await the results of their appeals.
The reputation of the East African nation, which has captured 34 of its 35 Olympic gold medals in track and field competitions, would suffer greatly from an all-encompassing ban from World Athletics and the AIU.
The National Olympic Committee of Kenya (NOC-K) acknowledged the government’s action and pledged to maintain its assistance.
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