John Fahey Called Political Heavyweight
|John Fahey is set to become the next president of WADA.
Incoming WADA president John Fahey is a “political heavyweight” with top level experience in negotiating with government officials, says Australian Sports Minister George Brandis.
Fahey is in line to become president of the anti-doping agency following this week’s withdrawal of the only other candidate, France’s Jean Francois Lamour.
Brandis, along with Prime Minister John Howard, made the decision to nominate Fahey for the WADA presidency, a post opening with Richard Pound stepping down this year.
Brandis tells Around the Rings that other sports ministers are “visibly impressed” by Fahey.
“What John Fahey has in particular, is deep experience at the most senior level of government,” Brandis says.
“What they were really looking for was a person with heavyweight, senior-level experience in government.”
Under WADA policy, the presidency alternates every six years between a representative from sport and one from government. With Pound from the IOC leaving, the next president will be the choice of the 18 government representatives on the WADA board.
Brandis says that as France’s sports minister, Lamour had some experience but was “frankly more a sporting figure than a political heavyweight”.
“John Fahey is political heavyweight with sporting experience and experience in particular with the Olympics through the campaign for the Sydney Olympics,” he says.
“He didn’t represent himself and didn’t claim to be an anti-doping expert, neither did [incumbent president Dick Pound].”
Australian Olympic Committee president John Coates has congratulated Fahey.
“I know John well from when, as NSW Premier, he chaired the successful Sydney Olympic Bid Committee. And from working closely with him, I know his great capabilities.”
“This is a most important role in world sport and international affairs”.
“We know from the reactions of athletes, coaches and the public to Marion Jones’ recent drug-taking admissions that more needs to be done,” Coates says.
“To change that will be John’s challenge.”
Another Australian IOC member, Phil Coles, praised Fahey as having the right qualities to succeed in the WADA role.
“He's a calm person. Even in the wildest situation, he manages to keep his cool, which is probably a good asset for this job,” Coles told ABC Radio.
With reporting from Sydney by Anthony Stavrinos, South Pacific Correspondent
Great Britain Doping Panel
Great Britain will have a new independent body to hear cases regarding drugs in sports. The National Anti Doping Panel will start work in 2008. Thus far the swimming, athletics and triathlon federations have agreed to hand responsibility of prosecuting doping cases to the NADP.
The Football Association so far is refusing to take part.
John Scott, UK Sport's director of drug
free sport, said "UK Sport can now take a step back, ensuring the panel has the independence it needs to instill confidence among sports and public alike in the handling of doping cases."
UCI Proposes “Passports” to Cut Down on Drug Cheats
After a year in which a Tour de France champion lost his title due to doping the International Cycling Union is creating “biological passports” for all riders. The passports would start with every rider providing UCI with a blood and urine sample. UCI anti doping chief Anne Gripper said this means “the rider becomes his own reference point. We look for variations in a rider's individual profile to determine whether there may be some indication of using a prohibited method or a prohibited substance."
Gosper: Jones’ Teammates Should Return Medals
Senior IOC member from Australia Kevan Gosper says that Marion Jones’ teammates in the relay events in Sydney should give up their medals. “It's unfortunate, but when one member of the team admits to cheating, the rest have to suffer the consequences," Gosper said. "This is the cruel thing about what Jones has admitted to and the ramifications of cheating. It affects so many people, including her teammates, but when one member of a relay crosses the line, everyone must suffer the same fate."
IOC President Jacques Rogge told French daily le Monde that Jones’ admission was a good thing. "It is a good thing every time we catch an athlete, even if it is always, in itself, a little disappointing. As a lover of sports, it hurts me. But as a leader, I say it is a good thing."
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Compiled by Ed Hula III, firstname.lastname@example.org
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