AGENCE-IOC open disciplinary commission after Kenya athletics coach sent home from Rio Olympics for posing as an ATHLETE in doping test
Kenyan athletics is embroiled in another doping scandal after a second coach in a week was sent home from the Olympics in disgrace after posing as an athlete and submitting to a urine test in his place.
John Anzrah, a sprints coach, was sent home after providing a doping sample in place of 800m runner Ferguson Rotich, fourth in last year’s world championships and one of the favourites for gold in Brazil.
Kip Keino, the legendary distance runner and chairman of the National Olympic Committee of Kenya said: ‘We have sent Anzrah back home. He presented himself as an athlete, gave the urine sample and even signed the documents. We cannot tolerate such behaviour.’
Last week, Kenya sent their track and field manager Michael Rotich home from the Games following allegations he requested money to let undercover journalists, posing as athlete representatives, know when drugs testers would come calling.
Following Anzrah’s dismissal from the Kenyan camp an IOC spokesman said: ‘We take note of the decision of the Kenyan Olympic Committee to send home its athletics coach following a violation of anti-doping rules and we thank them for their swift action.
‘The IOC has immediately created a disciplinary commission to look into the matter with regard to the coach and the athlete concerned.’
Ferguson Rotich’s agent, Marc Corstjens, says his runner lent Anzrah his athlete’s pass so the coach could get a free breakfast in the Olympic Village on Wednesday.
Anzrah was then approached by a doping control officer, who was looking for Rotich, and asked to provide a urine sample, which he did.
‘Ferguson is completely confused as to why he (Anzrah) would do this but the good news is that he found out straight away and went to the drug-tester and gave them blood and urine samples,’ said Corstjens, who only arrived in Rio on Thursday morning.
Stephen Soi, team Kenya’s Chef de Mission, said: ‘It’s a stupid thing really for a coach of his experience to be found in possession of an athlete’s accreditation, possibly because he wanted to access an area that he may not have had access to.’
According to Soi, the coach explained the mix-up to the team management afterwards.
‘As soon as we realised this we went to the testing officials and presented the runner with his photo ID,’ Soi told Kenyan journalist Evelyn Watta. ‘We agreed that the coach had acted irresponsibly, first by taking an athlete’s accreditation and even presenting his samples for testing.’
World athletics’ governing body, the International Association of Athletics Federations, said it has asked the IOC, which is responsible for anti-doping during the Games, for a full report and will then make an assessment on what disciplinary action should follow for the coach and athlete.