TTOC to serve as anti-doping body

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INTENT ON maintaining an unblemished record through the fundamental principles of Olympism, the Trinidad and Tobago Olympic Committee (TTOC) will, for the first time ever, serve as this nation’s official National Anti-Doping Organisation (NADO) for the forthcoming Caribbean Zone Men’s Olympic Beach Volleyball qualifiers, scheduled to serve off at Saith Park, Chaguanas, from May 8-10.

This historic revelation was made by TTOC president Brian Lewis yesterday. Lewis, who plays an instrumental role in ensuring that these tests are done to International Olympic Committee (IOC) standards, stated that all athletes competing in official Olympic qualifiers must be tested by a World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) and IOC-sanctioned organisation.

TT however does not have an official NADO, but according to the WADA code, it is mandatory that the National Olympic Committee/TTOC, acts as the NADO. Accordingly, the TTOC has the authority to direct that there be testing and to facilitate the process.

“The TTOC is of the resolute view that in competition, testing is compulsory. Given Trinidad and Tobago’s status and international standing as WADA compliant and a jurisdiction that is serious about anti doping and drug free sport, anti-doping tests will be conducted for the first time here in Trinidad and Tobago,” said Lewis.

These tests will be conducted by official and experienced doping control officers, Andre Collins and Michelle Stoute-Lopez, and other chaperones in charge of procuring. Samples gathered will then be sent to a WADA accredited lab for complete analysis.

The doping kits will be obtained from the Caribbean Regional Anti-Doping Organisation (RADO) and tests will be undertaken according to the WADA code. Additionally, in-competition anti-doping tests will be confirmed at the tournament’s technical meeting which will be held today between 6-8 pm at the Cascadia Hotel, St Ann’s.

“This is the first time that there is going to be in-competition testing by the Trinidad and Tobago Volleyball Federation, with the involvement of the TTOC, acting as the NADO. I made it clear to all concerned that we cannot have a Rio 2016 Olympic qualifier in Trinidad and Tobago in any sport, and there be no in-competition testing. If we are serious about maintaining TT’s status and international standing and being WADA compliant, and being a jurisdiction that is serious about it, tests must be conducted. This is a responsibility that the TTOC cannot and will not shirk,” added Lewis.

This country’s Anti-Doping in Sport Act was passed in 2013 under the then Minister of Sport Anil Roberts. The Rio 2016 Caribbean Zone Men’s Beach Volleyball Qualifier will be hosted by the Trinidad and Tobago Volleyball Federation (TTVF).

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