The World Anti Doping Agency or WADA is established to curb the menace of doping or drugs in sports, but it is certainly not out of controversies related to its own work. Doping is a very serious issue and it should be handled very sensibly because it may make or break a sportsperson’s entire career. Not only the career, but also his/her social status too comes under a spotlight. So there are a few controversies attached with WADA and which one feels should be taken care upon.
Controversies Related to WADA
The closed systems used by WADA, according to Professor Donald A Berry does not allow the validation of the tests and thus these tests cannot be trusted on their face of it. This was seconded by the editorial published in the journal ‘Nature’ on 7th August 2008. But these two arguments were rebutted by WADA in a separate article from WADA in the same journal in its 30th October 2008 issue.
The ‘Whereabouts Clause’ of WADA and Controversy
There is a ‘whereabouts clause’ in WADA’s anti-doping code of conduct which has been the most controversial of the all. The whereabouts clause says that every athlete must be ready for an anti-doping test one hour per day – seven days a week, without any prior notice served by the local doping agency authorized by WADA. This has irked not only the players but also some of the sporting bodies as well. The first such body to oppose this clause was the Belgian sports union ‘Sporta’. ‘Sporta’ has argued that this clause is violating the Article 8 of the European Convention on Human Rights. Some of the biggest sporting bodies like FIFA, UEFA and BCCI are very much critical and vocal about this clause also.
The International Association of Athletics Federations and UK Sport are some of the most supporting sports organizations for this clause. The main opposition to this is that it harms sportsperson’s personal life as well when he/she is not involved in any sporting activity.
On the other hand, many Leagues in the USA like the NFL has been continuously resisting towards this law and has tried its best not to go through this test at its player’s homes. Even the NFL players union is also opposing this clause and they are avoiding tests since long now.