Miller-Uibo cries foul as Naser is again spared suspension

Miller-Uibo cries foul as Naser is again spared suspension

Thursday, October 22, 2020

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Paris, France (AFP) — The women's 400m Olympic champion Shaunae Miller-Uibo yesterday criticised World Athletics after the doping suspension of her rival Salwa Eid Naser was overturned.

The 22-year-old Naser was provisionally suspended in June and charged with failing to meet 'whereabouts' criteria, but the decision was overturned on Tuesday by World Athletics Disciplinary Tribunal.

It said the circumstances surrounding one missed test “would have been comical were the consequences not so serious”.

Naser, who runs for Bahrain, beat Bahamian Miller-Uibo in the 2019 World Championships by running the third fastest time in the history of the event. Miller-Uibo had to settle for her second world championship silver.

In a post on Instagram, Miller-Uibo demanded to know why Naser had been allowed to run.

The world championships were in September and October 2019. Between January and April of that year, according to World Athletics, Naser had failed three times to fulfil her whereabouts obligations, although the last of those failures was on Tuesday deemed not her fault by the tribunal.

“Why was no action taken?” asked Miller-Uibo. “Why was the athlete not provisionally suspended until one year and two months later?”

“I cry foul play and believe there is a deeper explanation of how World Athletics...allowed this to carry on.

“We need to ensure that in athletics, we the athletes are not competing against any administrators whose only goal is for athletes to run faster, jump further and throw further at any cost.”

Later she added a comment saying she believed that the World Anti-Doping Agency would appeal the tribunal's verdict to the Court for Arbitration in Sport.

“We understand that the time this process takes can be frustrating, but the system must be independent, robust and thorough in order to maintain integrity,” said a statement released yesterday by World Athletics.

The Athletics Integrity Unit (AIU) explained: “The power to impose a provisional suspension in whereabouts cases only arises under the World Athletics rules once a charge is issued.

“Whereabouts cases often involve complex factual scenarios that require investigation.

“Cases are generally not concluded soon after the date of the third whereabouts failure, but often will only be finalised months later after all the necessary evidence supporting the charge is gathered.

“How long this takes depends on the specifics of each case.”

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