International Testing Agency (ITA) Chair Dr Valérie Fourneyron delivered a comprehensive update on the ITA’s progress during day one of the 133rd International Olympic Committee (IOC) Session in Buenos Aires on Monday 8 October.
Dr Fourneyron spoke about the significant development and rapid growth that the ITA has undergone since its official formation earlier this year. In the past few months, the ITA has held regular meetings with the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA), the IOC, International Federations (IFs), Major Event Organisers (MEOs) and National Anti-Doping Organisations (NADOs). During these meetings, the ITA has provided positive updates on its activities and the services it offers.
The ITA also took part in discussions relating to the ongoing revision of the World Anti-Doping Code, and has commenced work to support WADA with the extraction of samples removed from the Moscow laboratory in December 2014, before its suspension by WADA. The ITA is also supporting the IOC with the reanalysis of samples from the London 2012 Olympic Games.
“The ITA is now very different from what it was back in February, and I am very proud to see that the ITA is overseeing the anti-doping programme for the Youth Olympic Games here in Buenos Aires,” Dr Fourneyron said.
Dr Fourneyron also talked about the ITA’s future efforts, which will include more Olympic events.
“Our team has worked hard on preparations for testing management at the Buenos Aires 2018 Youth Olympic Games but we are now also looking ahead to the programmes for Lausanne 2020 and Tokyo 2020.”
“The ITA wishes to cooperate closely with the Local Organising Committees of these Games to ensure a robust and efficient anti-doping programme is in place, and to allow athletes to feel truly confident that all athletes have been subject to rigorous but fair testing before and during the Games.”
Dr Fourneyron also noted that more than 30 international sports organisations have already delegated anti-doping activities to the ITA. With 18 staff members coming from all corners of the world and from various stakeholder groups (WADA, IFs, MEOs, laboratory, NADOs, etc.), the ITA demonstrates that it is building a truly international centre of anti-doping expertise.
Dr Fourneyron expanded on the benefits that a partnership with the ITA brings to stakeholders, and reinforced her belief that the ITA, borne of the sports movement’s call for greater independence and transparency, will help restore confidence for athletes and fans.