WADA criticism of Ja excessive says IAAF official
MONTE CARLO, Monaco: t least one high- ranking IAAF official has labelled the World Anti- Doping Agency’s ( WADA) criticism of Jamaica’s antidoping efforts as ‘ excessive’, warning that the ‘ narrowmission’ approach from the international doping watchdogs could undermine the IAAF’s work towards securing the integrity of the sport.
IAAF deputy general secretary, Nick Davies, said yesterday, during the build- up to the IAAF Awards Ceremony and Gala celebrations here, that while track and field’s world governing body fully support’s WADA’s push to strengthen the domestic anti- doping arm, JADCO, it should be careful not to give the impression that the island’s athletes aren’t being tested. An approach that he believes will unfairly damage the country’s reputation and that of the sport in general.
“It ( WADA criticism) is excessive, and to be a bit cynical, I would link it with the need to create a lot of media attention in the lead up to the recent World Anti- doping Conference, which is taking place
Ain Johannesburg,” said Davies.
“We should be careful about making a WADA problem with a national anti- doping agency a reason to question the integrity of Jamaican athletes as a whole.”
“The IAAF wants to make the distinction between WADA’s concern about the challenges it faces to meet its own responsibility and desire to set up National Anti- Doping Agencies, such as JADCO. Unfortunately for the IAAF, the publicity that WADA is creating as a result of this narrow mission is beginning to undermine all the good work done by the IAAF and the sport of athletics in anti- doping and blur the message that, in fact, the IAAF is successfully responsible for testing Jamaican athletes extensively both in competition and out of competition,” added Davies.
“We are doing everything possible in terms of our testing programme to ensure that the top Jamaican athletes are tested regularly, Usain Bolt, for example, is the world’s most tested athlete so far in 2013! But we are also trying to support WADA’s efforts to set up JADCO as we strongly approve of efforts by countries to set up their own national anti- doping agencies, but having said that, the IAAF is also there to support and cover in terms of anti- doping,” said Davies.
Bolt was tested more than 12 times last year while Yohan Blake was tested over 14 times over the same period.
Jamaica has been lashed with heavy criticism from the international body especially after a damning report from former JADCO boss Renee Anne Shirley, which pointed to gaping inadequacies at the five year- old organisation.