AK holds maiden anti-doping forum for junior athletes

The forums, which will be done across the country, target 600 young athletes below 20 years old.
A positive drug test can lead not only to athletes being banned but also to a country at large can be suspended.
Diana Kipyokei, the 2021 Boston Marathon with Betty Wilson Lempus are the recent Kenyan athletes to be summoned by the Athletics Integrity Union.

Athletics Kenya has collaborated with the Athletics Integrity Unit (AIU) to run forums across the country, a move that will see young athletes sensitized on the effects of doping in the world of athletics with its maiden seminar held on Monday in Kitale, Transzoia County.

Young athletes following a presentation during the Athletics Kenya seminar on doping held in Kitale, Tranzoia County, on October 17, 2022. Photo/ Nation Africa

The forums, which will be done across the country, target 600 young athletes below 20 years old.

According to Barnaba Korir, the Athletics Kenya Youth Development Director, who spoke at a forum in Kitale on Monday, The forums will be targetting the youth aged below 20 years since they will soon be joining the senior ranks. Doping knowledge will be necessary to them since many, many athletes have been recently sanctioned for doping.

“Athletics Kenya and Athletics Integrity Union have initiated this forum to ensure our junior athletes are running a clean race since it’s easier for them with this being the right age. We will be targeting up to 600 young athletes across the country,” said Korir.

Korir further noted that all the necessary acts would be done to reduce the doping cases completely in the Country.
“Our top athletes who we believe understand the need to ensure clean sports are the same athletes being caught with the systems, yet we have taken them through education on the same.,” he added.

What are the Dangers of doping to a country?

A positive drug test can not only lead to athletes being banned from athletics and other sports. Still, it can also lead to a country at large being suspended by international bodies from participating in athletics.

Korir reiterated the need for sensitization on doping for the federation to completely eradicate doping-related cases, adding that Kenyan athletes have been sanctioned for doping every week.

Also in attendance at the forum was the Junior athletes’ national head coach Robert Ng’isirei who also emphasized the need for such seminars saying they are the right things to do if doping is something the country wants to forego.

Ng’isirei also insisted on the age of the category of the athletes since they need the knowledge while still in school.

Recent Kenyan athletes on the AIU list

Diana Kipyokei, the 2021 Boston Marathon with Betty Wilson Lempus are the recent Kenyan athletes to be summoned by the Athletics Integrity Union.

According to AIU, the two were provisionally suspended after testing positive for a banned substance, triamcinolone acetonide.

The two were also charged for having provided false information or documentation before AIU.

Other Kenyan athletes banned by AIU include Lillian Moraa, Philemon Kacheran Lokedi, and Ibrahim Makunga.

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