Russia anti-doping roadmap discussed at Agency’s Foundation Board meeting
The World Anti-Doping Agency’s (WADA’s) Foundation Board has been held in Seoul, South Korea, with several major issues discussed.
Board upholds the non-compliance status of RUSADA with the Anti-Doping Code
The Board endorsed WADA’s independent Compliance Review Committee’s (CRC’s) recommendation that Russia’s Anti-Doping Agency (RUSADA) remain non-compliant with the Code until such time as Russia fulfils the two outstanding criteria of RUSADA’s Roadmap to Compliance.
“There was clear consensus by the Board that the two outstanding Roadmap criteria were critical to global confidence and to operating in a credible environment.”
In the interest of full transparency, the Board first considered appeals for reinstatement from Russia’s Minister of Sport, Pavel Kolobkov, and the President of the Russian Olympic Committee, Alexander Zhukov. Thereafter, the Chair of the CRC, Jonathan Taylor, apprised the Board of what was considered by the CRC as it relates to reinstatement; in particular, the following two criteria that Russia had yet to complete on the Roadmap:
1. That the responsible authorities for anti-doping in Russia must publically accept the reported outcomes of the McLaren Investigation.
2. That the Russian Government must provide access for appropriate entities to the stored samples and electronic data in the Moscow Laboratory, which are sealed off due to a Federal investigation.
“The Board was encouraged by the significant progress achieved by RUSADA under its new Management with the support of WADA,” said Sir Craig Reedie. “However, there was clear consensus by the Board that the two outstanding Roadmap criteria were critical to global confidence and to operating in a credible environment” he continued. “The Agency will continue its efforts and work with Russia, in the hope that compliance can be achieved so that the country can benefit from a fully robust and independent anti-doping system, which operates within a healthy and supportive environment.”
WADA’s Board declared RUSADA non-compliant in November 2015, following revelations of widespread doping in Russian athletics that was exposed via WADA’s independent Pound Commission. Since then, WADA and its partners have been working very hard to rebuild a credible, and sustainable, anti-doping program in Russia that will ensure the protection of clean athletes inside and outside of the country.
Board approves International Standard for Code Compliance by Signatories
The Chair of the CRC then outlined activities being conducted by WADA in the area of Code compliance monitoring. This includes, in particular, ongoing support to Anti-Doping Organizations to achieve, maintain or regain Code compliance; the conduct of compliance audits regarding identified Code Signatories; as well as, development of an International Standard for Code Compliance by Signatories (ISCCS).
The ISCCS was adopted by the Executive Committee; while, the Code amendments that the ISCCS necessitates were approved by the Board. The ISCCS and the Code amendments, which will be published shortly and take effect on 1 April 2018, formalize the ways in which WADA supports Code Signatories in achieving, maintaining and regaining Code compliance. The ISCCS also specifies a range of graded, predictable and proportionate sanctions for cases of non-compliance; and, a process for determining non-compliance and consequences.
”Athletes have been very clear with us that, just as they are expected to uphold high standards of compliance with anti-doping rules, so too must Signatories be held to similar high standards within the Code,” said Olivier Niggli, WADA Director General. “The International Standard for Code Compliance by Signatories is a direct response to this athlete appeal,” Niggli continued. “Through an extensive stakeholder consultation process, we developed a robust Standard in a record time of six months,” he said. “We believe that this Standard will be a game changer and its unanimous approval reflects the level of importance that WADA stakeholders have given it and their commitment to the fight against doping.”
Board declares three Signatories non-compliant with the Code
Upon recommendation by the CRC, the Board declared the following three signatories non-compliant with the Code with immediate effect:
1. The National Anti-Doping Committee of Equatorial Guinea, due to their failure to complete the Code Compliance Questionnaire
2. The Kuwait Anti-Doping Committee, due to issues related to the structure and the content of their anti-doping program.
3. The Anti-Doping Unit – Mauritius Ministry of Youth and Sports, due to non-compliant anti-doping arrangements to enforce the Code.
WADA will now communicate this decision to its stakeholders, including the International Olympic Committee (IOC), other Major Event Organisations and UNESCO for their consideration and action.
The full story can be found on WADA’s website
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