Sports Scribes Have A Critical Role To Play In Fight Against Doping, ADAK Says

Kenya Sports scribes honoring long serving Nation Media Group editor Elias Makori in Naivasha on Saturday after his 32 year service in the industry. PHOTOS/SJAK

NAIVASHA, Kenya– Journalists have a critical role to play in the fight against doping as Kenya battles to be expunged from the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) Category A list of countries at the greatest risk of the scourge.

Speaking at a workshop organized for Sports Journalists Association of Kenya (SJAK) members in Naivasha, Nakuru County, Anti-Doping Agency of Kenya (ADAK) Chief Executive, Sarah Shibutse, through Head of Anti-Doping Education and Research Martin Sisa, noted that increased testing was unmasking more dope cheats than ever before.

It comes after ADAK recorded its highest ever annual testing figures of 4,135 athletes in the past year, with the organization targeting to increase the number to 6,000 in the next 12 months.

“In Kenya, where athletics is a significant source of national pride and international recognition, the role of journalists is particularly critical. By shining a light on doping practices and advocating for clean sports, they help to protect the integrity of Kenyan athletics and inspire future generations of athletes.”

“Journalists play a crucial role in the fight against doping in Kenya through various means. Their contributions are essential in creating awareness, promoting transparency, and holding stakeholders accountable,” the CEO emphasized.

Shibutshe revealed that Kenya is a signatory to the 2005 UNESCO Convention Against Doping in Sports guided by Article 5, of the Convention.

Article 5 states that “In abiding by the obligation contained in this convention, each state Party undertakes to adopt appropriate measures. Such measures may include legislation, regulation, policies or administrative practices.”

The CEO explained: “Since the last year’s clean sport workshop for SJAK, the media has been reporting on the high level of doping cases among Kenyan athletes. I am happy to report that the Agency has seen a tremendous improvement in the way doping cases are reported in Kenya. ADAK encourages Journalists to continue supporting this fight against doping.”

Shibutse added that journalists contribute immensely to the fight by exposing doping scandals through investigative journalism and by uncovering doping practices, often bringing hidden issues to light.

“By exposing these scandals, they can prompt action from sports authorities and the government. Through articles, interviews, and documentaries, journalists can highlight the importance of integrity and fair play in sports. Journalists can advocate for stronger anti-doping measures and policies through opinion pieces, editorials, and partnerships with advocacy groups. By reporting on successful doping control measures and clean athletes, journalists help to reinforce positive behaviors and role models in sports,” Shibutse expounded.

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