News 25th November 2015

Athletics Kenya siege ends after government promises change

Athletes ended their siege of the offices of Athletics Kenya in Nairobi last night, after the government promised change. It is understood that the protesters agreed to move out of Riadha House after the Kenyan Minister for Sport, Richard Ekai, agreed plans for change that include calling for the resignation of Athletics Kenya President Isaiah Kiplagat and Vice President David Okeyo, who is also a member of the IAAF Council.

It is understood that the protest was organised by the Professional Athletes’ Association of Kenya (PAAK), headed by former Marathon World Record holder Wilson Kipsang (pictured). As reported by the Sports Integrity Initiative yesterday, protesters entered Riadha House in Nairobi on Monday, stopping Athletics Kenya officials from entering, and many slept in the offices that night.

It is understood that as well as investigating allegations that Athletics Kenya officials were complicit in hiding doping, the Ethics Commission of the International Association of Athletics Federations (IAAF) is examining whether Kiplagat and Okeyo played any part in the alleged siphoning of money from a 2003 sponsorship deal between Athletics Kenya and Nike. Athletics Kenya has previously denied accusations that its officials were complicit in hiding doping; and evidence from ARD’s August documentary (available to view below: see from 41:55 on) concerning the siphoned of money from the Nike deal. “AK are not aware of any investigations by the police of allegations of extortion by our members”, it said in a statement provided to the Evening Standard. “We welcome any such information. AK have no information on any of the above and there are no suspensions on any AK personnel in regards to the matters mentioned.”

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