The assurance provided by Athletics Kenya that it would become more vigilant about the use of performance enhancing drugs in sports has been manifested in the suspension of three distance runners of the country on drug offenses.
Wilson Loyanae Erupe tested positive for EPO, which has the ability to improve the oxygen carrying capacity in the body, and was banned for two years. Nixon Kiplagat Cherutich received a ban of two years for testing positive for nandrolone, an anabolic steroid, after a race in Mexico. Moses Kiptoo Kurgat received a ban of one year and it is still unclear of the offense. Loyanae is the world-class athlete of the trio, having won the 2012 Seoul International Marathon in 2:05:37.
It was also reported that a female runner may receive a ban when official procedures of her case are completed; her “A” sample tested positive at the 2012 Nairobi Marathon in October, and the “B” sample now has to be evaluated.
Denying allegations that doping was widespread in Kenya, Athletics Kenya Secretary General David Okeyo, said, “We have nothing to hide. As soon as we establish any athlete has doped, we shall expose them. The procedures involved require a lot of time and the athletes must state their case before the Medical Commission so the issue of AK not taking any action does not arise.”
Okeyo pointed out, “Loyanae is a top marathoner and he is in the top 30 but we will not spare anyone. We are taking doping seriously.”
Athletics Kenya is awaiting results of drug tests from its national cross country championships before naming a team for the world cross country championships in Poland on March 24, Okeyo also noted.