NAIROBI (Xinhua) --
The Kenyan government has backed a
move by Athletics Kenya (AK) to block all cheats from
representing the country in international championships.
Sports cabinet secretary Amina Mohammed said in Nairobi that for
the country to reverse the damage doping has on its athletes,
they must stop any elite runner banned for doping from competing
in international races beyond the Olympics, World Championships,
Commonwealth Games and Africa Games.
"We must stop them. Athletes must understand that once they
fail doping test, its over for them, even if they serve their
suspension from active competition, we will not allow them to
leave the country to compete abroad," Mohammed said on Tuesday
Kenya has had six cases of doping in the last seven months,
joining over 50 athletes who have been banned since the Beijing
2008 Olympic Games including 2016 Rio Olympics marathon champion
Jemima Sumgong, half-marathon world record holder Abraham Kiptum
and former Olympic champion and three-time world title winner in
1,500m Asbel Kiprop.
Kenya is in Category A along with eastern African rivals
Ethiopia, Belarus and Ukraine, described by the IAAF as "member
federations majorly at risk of doping."
Mohammed said the move by the International Association of
Athletics Federation (IAAF) to have athletes tested more before
major athletics championships will also help eradicate the vice.
"Kenya is ranked in category A and athletes must go through
stringent measures like three tests out of competition and one
in competition prior to international competitions.
"We must support these measures hence we shall not allow
dopers to go and shame this country again," said Mohammed.
Athletics Kenya (AK) president Jack Tuwei said Kenya has
enough talent to win clean and no cheat should be allowed to put
on the national jersey.
"For four years running, we have been on the watch list of
IAAF. Last year that was upgraded because athletes don’t want to
listen to advice on anti-doping," he said.
Kenya leads Africa
in doping while Russians
top the world