THE ROLE AND FUNCTIONS OF THE JAMAICA ANTI-DOPING COMMISSION

Where there are local cases of violation of the anti-doping rules, the Jamaica Anti-Doping Commission (JADCO)  is required to adhere to the guidelines of the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) when presenting such cases for hearing.

This is a statutory obligation and JADCO, governed by the Anti-Doping in Sport Act, cannot exercise any discretion in choosing whether to pursue a rule of violation on any athlete brought to the Commission’s attention.  In fact, JADCO cannot decide if an athlete has committed an Anti-Doping Rule Violation.  JADCO is simply expected to present its case to the Independent Anti-Doping Disciplinary Panel for review.

The Independent Anti-Doping Disciplinary Panel, although also governed by the same Act of Parliament as JADCO, operates as a separate body, over which JADCO has no control in the decisions taken in any particular case.  In fact, the Panel is independent of JADCO.

It should be noted that prior to the Independent Anti-Doping Disciplinary Panel’s ruling on any case, JADCO is forbidden by the Act to speak with members of the media, or to disclose any details of that particular case, unless the said athlete breaches that protocol.  But JADCO is allowed to inform the public that a case has been submitted to the Independent Anti-Doping Disciplinary Panel and is required to publish the decision of the Panel after that body has ruled.

When the Anti-Doping Rule Violation involves test results of a sample, JADCO is not able to speak on that matter until after a ‘B’ sample has been returned by JADCO, showing a positive result of a banned substance. However, the athlete is to be informed first, then his or her sport organisation and the public can only be notified after the case has been submitted to the Independent Anti-Doping Disciplinary Panel.   Even at that point, details of the allegations cannot be disclosed by law, unless the athlete breaches the protocol, or gives permission for disclosure.

It should be pointed out that JADCO has no control over the hearing procedure before the Independent Anti-Doping Disciplinary Panel, but the Panel may request certain documents and advise of the persons it wishes to take part in any hearing, including interested sports organisations.