Russia Anti-Doping Agency forms new supervisory board in attempt to comply with WADA code

An updated version of the Code published by the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) will enforce a conflict of interest policy that prohibits members of national Olympic or Paralympic committees, sports federations and organisations from sitting on the board of their country's anti-doping agencies.

Agence France-Presse December 11, 2020 21:29:02 IST
Russia Anti-Doping Agency forms new supervisory board in attempt to comply with WADA code

File image of Yuri Ganus. AFP

Moscow: Russia's Anti-Doping Agency (RUSADA) formed a new supervisory board on Friday, with Olympic pole vaulter Yelena Isinbayeva notably leaving her seat in a decision intended to comply with the new World Anti-Doping Code.

An updated version of the Code published by the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) will enforce a conflict of interest policy that prohibits members of national Olympic or Paralympic committees, sports federations and organisations from sitting on the board of their country's anti-doping agencies.

The updated rules will come into force on 1 January, 2021.

RUSADA's supervisory board had two members who would be considered as having a conflict of interest under the new restrictions, including Isinbayeva, a member of the International Olympic Committee (IOC).

RUSADA formalised the new board during its general meeting on Friday, saying it now "fully complies with the requirements of the World Anti-Doping Code".

The new seven-member supervisory board includes academics, lawyers, former cosmonaut Sergei Ilyukov, a former doctor for the Finnish Olympic team and a renowned anti-doping expert whose candidacy was recommended by WADA.

Earlier this year, RUSADA's supervisory board dismissed the anti-doping agency's chief Yuri Ganus, a respected figure abroad who accused Russia's sporting leadership of failing to fight widespread doping use.

Although financial violations were the official reason for his dismissal, Ganus later said he had expected the move and warned that his removal would lead to stronger international measures against Russia.

His dismissal was poorly received by WADA, which said the move "reinforced concerns" about the motives behind the decision.

Russia became embroiled in a large-scale doping scandal in 2016 after a state-backed conspiracy designed to cover up Russia's cheating at the 2014 Sochi Winter Olympics came to light.

WADA in 2019 slapped Russia with a four-year ban from international sports, a decision that Russia has been attempting to overturn at the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) in Lausanne, Switzerland.

The hearings began in early November and a decision is expected before the end of the year, the CAS told AFP.

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