Last updated 1 year ago | By Dennis Okeyo
Anti-Doping Agency of Kenya (Adak) has requested the government for additional funding to meet the ever-increasing anti-doping education and doping control programs.
Adak lacks enough funds to carry out its roles even as a number of Kenyan sportsmen and women are indulging in use of performance-enhancing substances.
Parliament has steadily reduced Adak’s budget from Sh300m to Sh257 million allocated in previous years.
The Sh43 million budget cut has seen the agency’s operations reduce significantly as inflation drives up the costs of sample collection and transportation to the various laboratories around the world.
Sources say Adak financial woes forced them to seek funds from Athletics Kenya to conduct anti-doping campaigns and testing during the National Cross Country Championships held in Eldoret two months ago.
Adak CEO Japhter Rugut confirmed the anti-doping watchdog lacks money saying the increase by Kenyan teams playing at an international level meant that Adak is forced to carry out more tests than budgeted for.
Last year, the Athletics Integrity Unit and Lancet Group of Laboratories set up a Wada-accredited doping lab in Nairobi.
“With the Wada-accredited laboratory in Kenya, we have scaled up our blood sample collection as we position ourselves to take advantage of the opportunity presented by the Lancet Group of laboratories,” said Rugut.
“We are likely to receive more requests to carry out blood sample collection from our stakeholders and partners in the fight against doping across the world. We view these requests as strong confidence in our capacity as a sample collection authority and it is for this reason that we urge the government to consider allocating us more finances,” he added.
Sports Principal Secretary Peter Kaberia reiterated the ministry’s support of a robust anti-doping program in Kenya.
“We are fully behind their effort to eradicate the doping menace among our sports people. It is for this reason that we support their request for consideration for additional funding as the agency is charged with the important mandate of ensuring the integrity of our sport,” he said
He added: “As a ministry, we remain resolute on the need to protect the clean athlete through eradicating cheats among the various sports disciplines in Kenya and it is for this reason that we strongly value the role Adak is playing.”
During a session with parliamentarians on the status of anti-doping in the country last week, Rugut said: “Our mandate is unique and sensitive and so far; the government has continued to display its disposition and commitment to the promotion of clean sport in Kenya through adequate financing.