Deputy Premier and Foreign Minister Demeke Mekonnen met with president of World Anti-doping Agency Witold Bańka in Addis Ababa today.

Ethiopia keen to work with WADE to Drive doping out of all Sport

ADDIS ABABA – Ethiopia says it will work together with the World Anti-doping Agency (WADE) in its bid to make all sports clean.

Deputy Premier and Foreign Minister Demeke Mekonnen met with WADE President Witold Bańka in Addis Ababa today.

The two sides discussed ongoing anti-doping efforts in Ethiopia and the African continent.

Bańka says this “important discussion” has helped the two sides exchange views “on some crucial clean sport issues”.

The meeting took place after Ethiopian athletics team finished second in the World Athletics Championships 2022 final medal standings following strict domestic testing regimes.

According to Demeke, the government views sport as one the tools of diplomacy that play an important role to enhance cooperation between and among nations.

Ethiopia “will work hand-in-hand with all stakeholders” including WADA in the fight against doping, Demeke told Bańka.

Ethiopia remains in Category A List

Four of the Athletics Integrity Unit category A National Federations (NFs) – those that have the highest doping risk – are from Africa: Ethiopia, Kenya, Morocco and Nigeria.

Athletes from these countries have to undergo at least three no-notice out-of-competition tests (urine and blood) three weeks apart in the 10 months leading up to a major event. The results determine their eligibility for the World Athletics Championships or the Olympic Games.

Last year, a combined total of 1143 tests were conducted for 128 athletes at domestic level in the four high-risk African countries ahead of the 2022 World Championships in Oregon.

The countries did not have any athletes declared not eligible for the Championships thanks to “significant improvements” in their domestic testing programs, the AIU said.

‘Govt committed to drive doping out of all sports’

During his meeting with Demeke today, WADA President Bańka lauded the efforts of Ethiopia to contain the impact of doping in sports.

He also reaffirmed the agency’s continued support to strengthen institutional capacity.

The foreign ministry stated the government’s “firm position that all sports should be practiced in a clean and doping free environment.”

“To this effect, it promotes an effective way of fighting against doping in all sports by focusing on several areas to ensure a harmonized approach to anti-doping,” the Ministry said.