'Budget cut won’t affect doping tests in Jamaica'
The Jamaica Anti-Doping Commission (JADCO) says a $14 million budget cut is not expected to affect its operations for the 2015-2016 fiscal year.
Kingston: The Jamaica Anti-Doping Commission (JADCO) says a $14 million budget cut is not expected to affect its operations for the 2015-2016 fiscal year.
Sports Minister Natalie Neita-Headley announced in parliament last week that the government was reducing its allocation to JADCO from $104 million to $90 million, reports CMC.
However, executive director of JADCO Corey Brown has given the assurance that the decrease will not have a negative impact on the organisation's ability to effectively execute its mandate.
"There were some one-off items in the works last year; for example, the drafting of our rules, the dealing with our website and matters like that," Brown said on Tuesday.
"So, in terms of our operation, it won't affect our operations at all. Those items are not on the books this year, and that would explain the cut."
In announcing the budget cut, Neita-Headley said she did not anticipate a recurrence of the local doping scandal which rocked the sport of Track and Field because of the strides Jamaica has made to improve its anti-doping programme.
Jamaica has introduced a number of new measures to repair its drug testing programme since a number of its athletes including former world record holder Asafa Powell and Olympic gold medallist Sherone Simpson, tested positive for banned substances.
"We are taking anti-doping very seriously in Jamaica. We have our plans outlined, we know what we need to do, we know the things that are coming up, and we are pushing full steam ahead," Brown insisted.
"You will see in the coming months that our educational programme will not be backing off. Our testing will be going on as usual, so it certainly won't be affecting us."
Last month, World Anti-Doping Association (WADA) president Craig Reedie ended a short visit to Jamaica by applauding the progress made to improve its drug testing programme.