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Anti-doping lobbyists raid bogus clinics

ATHLETICS By Jonathan Komen | October 4th 2015
Gold winner Eunice Sum of Kenya (C) poses with compatriots Janeth Jepkosgei (L) and Agatha Jeruto (R) following the women's 800 meter event during the 19th Senior Africa Championship Athletics on August 14, 2014 in Marrakesh. AFP PHOTO

Athletics Kenya’s ban on two athletes on Thursday came barely a day after various clinics were raided by anti-doping lobbyists.

On Wednesday, Anti-doping Agency of Kenya marshaled forces with the police, Kenya Medical Practitioners and Dentists Board (KMPDB), Ministry of Sports, Pharmacy and Poisons Board and regional anti-doping organisation raided a chemist in Nairobi’s central business district and Kapsabet town to flash out “conmen and unprofessional doctors from the trade.”

Drama unfolded in a medical clinic and laboratory in Kapsabet town after they were found operating without the right documentation.

KMPDB member, Dr Lukoye Atwoli, said the proprietor ‘doctor’ Stephen Kiplagat of Kapsabet Medical Clinic Kiplagat was “a quack in the medical industry.”

“He has purported to treat our high level Kenyan athletes yet he is not qualified. We suspect since he is not qualified and some things he has been doing to our athletes might be related to doping that we hear. But we are still investigating to get full information. He will be charged for not just masquerading as a doctor but also for tarnishing the good name of our athletes by attempting to involve them in an offence that will affect their career,” said Dr Atwoli of Moi University’s School of Medicine.

He cautioned athletes to avoid seeking medicare from quacks and unlicensed practitioners.

He added: “And we want to plead with our athletes not to be visiting quacks. If they have any health problems, they should visit health facilities run by practitioners where they can be advised on what is safe and what is not safe. We are quite sure that activities like what we have done today jointly with poisons board and police will continue and we will discourage quarks of this nature from operating,” added Dr Lukoye.

Nandi Central OCPD Joakim Meja said Kiplagat will be arraigned in court. “We have that suspect in our custody and will be taken to court tomorrow (Friday). We have exhibits and the clinic shall remain closed since it was operating illegally,” said Meja. In Nairobi, the team raided a chemist run in the Central Business District and arrested a person.

One Robin Kung’u was arrested, but it wasn’t clear whether he would be arraigned in court.

On Thursday, Athletics Kenya sanctioned Josephine Jepkoech Jepkorir and Agatha Jeruto for failing doping tests.

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