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Athletics Integrity Unit: Kenyan athlete Alex Korio banned for doping and whereabouts failures

Last updated 2 months ago | By Waweru Titus

Current Kenyan law stipulates a jail term of up to three years for support staff found guilty in connection with doping, but not for athletes. [Photo: Courtesy]

The Athletics Integrity Unit (AIU) has banned Kenya’s Alex Korio Oliotiptip for two-years for whereabouts failures and violation of the World Athletics anti-doping rules.

Korio had been slapped with a provisional suspension in May after he failed three whereabouts cases and missed planned anti-doping tests.

The Kenyan road runner was given an opportunity to present his case before the AIU, but his submission failed to convince the anti-doping sleuths.

" Athletes violate the anti-doping rules when they have any combination of three missed tests or filing failures within any 12-month period. That period beginning on the day of the first relevant missed test or filing failure.

"The athlete failed to respond and to provide any explanation concerning the apparent three missed tests," the AIU said in a statement on Friday.

The AIU slapped the 30-year-old with a two-year ban from all sports competition effective July 19, 2019. The ban will end on July 19, 2021, but he can appeal the decision.

The athletics body ruled that Korio will face the bane of forfeiture of any awards, medals, points, titles and appearance money which he may have earned starting July last year.

Korio is now the 55th Kenyan athlete to be banned in five years, joining former World Marathon record holder Wilson Kipsang, Olympic marathon champion Jemima Sumgong, Rita Jeptoo, the Boston and Chicago marathon champion and former World 1,500m champion Asbel Kiprop.

In 2020 alone, five Kenyan athletes have been suspended and charged for whereabouts failures by the AIU including; former world marathon record holder Kipsang, former world junior 800m champion Alfred Kipketer, James Kibet, Mercy Jerotich and distance runner Kenneth Kipkemoi.

Current Kenyan law stipulates a jail term of up to three years for support staff found guilty in connection with doping, but not for athletes.

Sports Cabinet Secretary Amina Mohamed said in June they will pass legislation to criminalise doping offences.

During a meeting with veteran athletes, CS Mohamed said that they were working closely with ADAK to present the document to Parliament for debate.

If the Bill is passed, offenders will serve jail terms as the country intensifies its fight against the vice.

From 2004 to August 2018, 138 Kenyan athletes tested positive for performance-enhancing drugs, according to a WADA report published in September 2018.

With their high number of dopers, Kenya was placed under category A on the list of countries being watched together with Nigeria, Ethiopia, Bahrain, Morocco, Ukraine and Belarus.

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