Johannesburg - The Minister of Sports, Arts and Culture, Zizi Kodwa, has requested an urgent meeting with the president of the World Anti-Doping Agency (Wada) to remedy the decision that South Africa is no longer compliant with the World Anti-Doping Code.
Shortly after the announcement was made last week, Kodwa reportedly contacted Wada president Witold Banka on South Africa’s position and requested to meet him urgently.
According to the minister, the relevant institutes and bodies governing the sports fraternity in the country had worked tirelessly to amend the legislation as recommended by the agency.
He said the agency had even made inputs working alongside the department to draft the South African Institute for Drug-Free Sport’s (Saids) Amendment Bill, which Kodwa said would as soon as possible be taken through the constitutional process to finalise it.
“I have noted the decision by the World Anti-Doping Agency that the current South African legislation, the South African Drug-Free Sport Amendment
Act, is not compliant with the World Anti-Doping Code. It is disappointing that South Africa has been found to be non-compliant despite undertaking to pass legislation that meets the World Anti-Doping Code.”
He added: “The South African government process for promulgating legislation is thorough and comprehensive. Any legislation, including amendments, must meet the muster of the Constitution and cannot contradict or nullify any existing laws.”
Kodwa further asserted that South Africa remained committed to anti-doping in sport and that Saids, tasked with tackling doping in sports in order to ensure a culture of ethics and fair play within South Africa, had done much work to meet the evolving dynamics of compliance in global sport on matters of anti-doping, anti-corruption, governance reforms, child safeguarding and data protection.
“I would like to reassure athletes, sports federations and the sports public that the non-compliance finding will not affect drug testing in South African sports. Saids will continue to deliver services that protect clean sport in South Africa,” he said.