ANCWL slams US media over Semenya’s gender
JOHANNESBURG — The African National Congress Women’s League (ANCWL) has condemned unwarranted speculation by international media on South African gold medallist Caster Semenya’s gender, it said in a statement.
“As the Women’s League we view the debate on Caster’s gender as an attack to humiliate and demoralise her since she is expected to win a gold medal in the 2016 Olympic Games,” it said.
South Africans also took to social media in defence of Semenya under the hashtag #HandsOffCaster after two articles appeared in US media this week.
One was titled ‘Is it fair for Caster Semenya to compete against women in Rio’ in Sports Illustrated and the other, ‘Caster Semenya and the Logic behind Olympic Competition’ in the New Yorker.
Semenya is due to participate in the women’s 800m race on Wednesday.
The ANCWL also slammed the scrutiny as motive for those continually perpetuating a view that African women had no capacity to excel in sports.
The league also argued that Semenya’s gender was not a debatable matter as she was born a girl.
“No amount of public humiliation can change her gender,” the statement read.
“The courts have proven that there was insufficient evidence to prove that women athletes with higher testosterone levels had an edge over other women athletes. This kind of scrutiny is inhumane and is a violation of Semenya’s human rights.” — Sapa