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Kenya boosting tests under new IOC rule

Kenya has welcomed the new doping testing procedure set by the International Olympic Committee (IOC) for its athletes ahead of the Rio Olympic Games.

The IOC said on Tuesday that deficiencies in the anti-doping systems in Kenya and Russia had created doubts about the presumption of innocence for athletes from both countries.

Kenyan Olympic chief Kipchoge Keino confirmed that 60 athletes, including Rugby Sevens players, have already undergone the new testing procedure and more tests were expected before the team departs for the Olympics.

“They have already tested 60 athletes, including junior runners preparing for the IAAF World Under 20 junior athletics championships in Bydgoszcz, Poland in July, and the Rugby Sevens players who will play in the Olympics for the first time,” Kipchoge told AFP.

“It is a must that every Kenyan athlete competing under the IAAF must undergo more than three tests before they depart for Rio.”

Kenya has come under scrutiny from the IAAF and the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) over its flagging doping system, necessitating changes to legislation to avoid expulsion of its world-beating distance runners from August’s Rio de Janeiro Olympics.

In May, WADA declared Kenya non-compliant after a legislation to criminalise doping passed in parliament failed to meet its requirements, forcing a review to bill to include parts which had been left out from the original draft passed by the world anti-doping agency.

Last week Kenyan Sports Minister Hassan Wario told the local media that WADA had approved the amendments, which were awaiting the assent of President Uhuru Kenyatta for Kenya to be declared fully compliant with the WADA code.

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