KINGSTON – Two global experts on anti-doping in sports expressed confidence in the Jamaica Anti-Doping Commission’s overseeing of drug testing, cases of adverse analytical findings, and disciplinary hearings.
The issue arose during Saturday’s Anti-Doping in Sport Workshop at the Faculty of Law Lecture Theatre on the University of the West Indies, Mona campus, while lawyers demonstrated and raised doubt over cases related to Jamaican athletes.
However, former science director of the United States Anti-Doping Agency Dr. Richard Hilderbrand and the onetime boss of the World Anti-Doping Agency Richard ‘Dick’ Pound declared satisfaction that the correct procedures were being followed in Jamaica.
Dr. Hilderbrand said though he was not fully familiar with all the cases, he has a “great deal” of faith in how anti-doping measures were managed across the globe. He suggested that a lack of mutual understanding on anti-doping matters could be the reason for misdirected criticism.
“I’m not familiar with the cases (in Jamaica) that much, but I can say I have a great deal of confidence in the certified laboratories and in the anti-doping organisations (around the world). I find that all of the people I deal with are very interested in the ethics and integrity,” he said at the end of the workshop.
“The attorneys that were speaking for the defence (of athletes)… (it is important) to have them understand the organisational structure of the Jamaica Anti-Doping Commission and how tribunals work to make decisions and how the appeals work. Some of that explanation is going to be critical,” added Hilderbrand, who now consults on sport anti-doping science.
However, attorney-at-law Alando Terrelonge, who represented embattled sprinter Steve Mullings during the Jamaica Anti-Doping disciplinary hearings in 2011, targeted the JADCo and some of the guidelines set out by the WADA.
Pound, also a former International Olympic Committee executive, and one who has in the past controversially questioned the effectiveness of JADCo’s programmes, was firm that proper guidelines were followed in the Mullings case.
“I’m not that familiar (with the details, but) the process went in the normal direction,” said the tough talking Pound.
Mullings, who has maintained he is innocent, was banned for life by a Jamaica Anti-doping disciplinary panel after testing positive for the ultradiuretic Furosemide.