Former world champion Asbel Kiprop is considering taking legal action against Kenya’s athletics body.
Kiprop, a 1,500m specialist with three world titles and an Olympic gold is currently serving a four-year doping ban.
He was suspended from all athletics activities by the Athletics Integrity Unit (AIU) in April 2019 after he tested positive for performance enhancing drug, Erythropoietin, in 2017.
The ban will end on 2 February 2022.
Kenya is grappling with rising cases of doping with over two dozen elite athletes currently serving various doping related bans.
In their fight against rampant use of drugs, Athletics Kenya made a pronouncement that anyone implicated in doping will no longer be allowed to represent the east African country in any international event.
Kiprop, who ruled the world championship stage between 2011 and 2015, insists that he will challenge AK’s decision in court as soon as he is done serving his term.
“I will challenge the AK decision next year even if it means going to the courts,” Kiprop told SPORTS AFRICA.
He added: “I will fight for my rights and those of other athletes who have served their terms to be respected, ” said Kiprop who argues that he should be considered ‘innocent’ after serving the full term.
Kenya is set to hold OlympicS pre-trials in Nairobi starting this Thursday running into Saturday and AK insists that only invited athletes will take part in the three-day event and the main trials later in June.
“The event remains an invite-only for those athletes who have thus far attained the qualifying mark for the Olympics in their respective events,” said AK.
Athletics Kenya further directed that only those athletes wishing to take part in the trials will have to fully meet the anti-doping requirements.
But Kiprop says that he will challenge this pronouncement that he says is not backed up by any law.
Kiprop has always maintained that he never doped and that his ban was a machination by some powerful individuals within the athletics circle.
“We’ve seen people serve doping bans but still come back after serving their terms and actually take part at major events. Justin Gatlin is a good example. What is so different with Kenya that you are barred from taking part in the Olympics, for example, when you’ve served your full term?” posed Kiprop.
He added: “AK should remember that those people they barred from running are members of the society and that they are human beings with rights and privileges. They deserve a second chance!
While Kiprop insists that he doesn’t understand why he was ‘singled out for the offence”, the lanky runner suspects that his problems could be linked to acts of philanthropy he did some time back when he donated food stuff to some families in Embu and Baringo Counties.
“I know that they are targeting me because I am a bit outspoken and controversial and they fear that I might expose them once I’m back because they didn’t help me when I was fighting the AIU decision. Not unless there is someone at Riadha House who is fixing athletes…
“I don’t know why they picked me. My troubles with AK started when I left the team camp without permission to donate some food stuff to children in Embu.
“Even though I later went to Uganda and performed as expected of me, my relationship with AK has never been the same ever since,” revealed Kiprop.
Kiprop, however, explained that he is not planning to sue AIU for damages as might have been construed in one of his many posts on Twitter.
“If one day I will earn Justice over Nov 27, 2017 false doping accusation, and luckily get compensated, (then) I will donate all the compensation . I don’t want any human to experience falsehood. I didn’t dope.”
He however said he will leave that decision to AIU to “decide to have a reflection and soul searching.”
“You can’t hide the truth forever,” Kiprop told Standard Sport.
“If they (AIU) minded to do their homework well, then I don’t think we would be talking about this matter,” says Kiprop who has maintained his innocence.
“I will not appeal, but if they (AIU) can have a deep reflection and realize that they handed me a wrong judgement and maybe compensate me for the damages, then I will donate the proceeds to any lawyer doing pro bono services for those people who’ve been falsely accused like me.”
In April 2019, he a tweeted the World Athletics and his employer, the National Police Service, by saying, “I pray to the National Police Service to dismiss me now. Before I use their machinery to earn myself Justice. Kindly. IAAF come take your medals.”