Inasoc’s silence means investigations can’t start
THE Olympic Council of Malaysia (OCM) has been frustrated by the Indonesia Sea Games organisers (Inasoc) in their attempt to begin hearings of two Malaysian athletes who failed dope tests after winning medals in Palembang last November.
OCM wants to take the lead in holding the hearings but must first ensure that Inasoc is not conducting an investigation of its own before proceeding with the drug cases of 4x400m runner Yunus Lasaleh and weightlifter Firdaus Abdul Razak.
On Monday, OCM halted the Malaysian Athletic Union's (MAU) hearing into the positive drug test of Yunus and its honorary secretary Datuk Sieh Kok Chi has enlisted the assistance of the Sea Games Federation (SGF) to resolve the issue.
"We have written two letters to Inasoc in a bid to give them the opportunity to let us hold the hearings into the two athletes. As Inasoc has been disbanded, we have asked the SGF, which is the body in charge of the Sea Games, to advise us on the way forward.
"According to the Wada (World Anti-Doping Agency) code, it is SGF which is in charge of matters involving doping and not the national governing bodies. This is why we asked MAU to stop its inquiry.
"However, we have suggested that the hearings be delegated to us and we have given an undertaking that the hearings will be held in strict compliance to the Wada code.
"We do not know how soon Inasoc will reply but we will push SGF members to give us the go ahead to conduct the hearings," said Kok Chi yesterday.
Both Yunus, a member of 4x400m gold medal-winning quartet, and Firdaus have lodged police reports regarding their positive tests with the former alleging MAU deputy president Karim Ibrahim arranged to provide pills and injections in the run-up to the Sea Games.
Firdaus, bronze medallist in the below-105kg category, claimed he took white capsules provided by his coach during a training stint in China last October.
Karim has maintained a stoic silence over Yunus' allegations while national weightlifting head coach Lin Xin Hui rejected Firdaus' claims as unfounded.
Kok Chi added that OCM is also prepared to investigate the allegations against Karim since MAU has requested for an independent hearing.
"We can hold the doping hearing and a separate hearing into Karim at the same time. MAU has asked for us to be included in an independent investigation (of the allegations against Karim)," said Kok Chi.
MAU president Datuk Seri Shahidan Kassim said after a council meeting on Monday that former Court of Appeal judge Datuk V. C. George would head an investigation committee to look into the allegations by Yunus.