Friday, September 11, 2009

What next for Caster?

I thought Vanilla Ice had a very apt comment, that "Upon further reflection, Semenya knew something was wrong. There has been controversy surrounding him since he competed at school level....I think they are a bunch of cheats all round, so desperate to be good at something. That is the tragedy."

South African National Assembly's sports committee appears to be saving face with their call for a law suit against IAAF. Instead they should be addressing the real issues surrounding this whole bugger up. "She" should never have been allowed to take part in a woman's event at the world championships without establishing "her" sex prior to the event. It would have saved us all face, including Caster Semenya, Chuene, Athletics South Africa and the IAAF.

Caster Semenya's right to privacy has been violated and lawyers must be briefed by the government to sue the International Association of Athletics Federations (IAAF) on her behalf, says the National Assembly's sports committee chairman, Butana Komphela.

He said today that the ANC's parliamentary study group would insist on legal action when it meets Sports Minister Makhenkesi Stofile next week.

"We will ask the minister to take drastic measures to protect Caster Semenya. Someone is guilty of leaking her confidential medical information to Australian newspapers."

While Komphela stressed that the Sydney Morning Herald report claiming that sex tests had revealed that the runner was a hermaphrodite had not been officially confirmed by the IAAF, he said the damage done to the young woman was incalculable regardless of whether it was true or false.

"We need to bring comfort," he said.

Her medical records appeared to have been leaked and her right to privacy violated in the must public way, he said.

It would not be a matter of contesting the medical findings, but how the issue had been handled by the international body.

"The IAAF must be held responsible; they must find out who is leaking information," Komphela said.

He said he was gatvol and proclaimed that he was "prepared to lay down his life for that girl".

Once the results of the battery of medical tests were officially confirmed, "then we can deal with the findings".

He thanked the South African media for not hounding Semenya and implored journalists to respect the athlete's privacy.

This morning Leonard Chuene, head of Athletics South Africa (ASA), slammed the international reports of Semenya's unusual biological make-up as "disgraceful".

He said that upon hearing the speculation about the results yesterday, he had phoned the IAAF to demand to know how the supposed results had entered the public domain. He said the IAAF had insisted that they would only address the matter in November and had denied leaking the report.

Asked how Semenya was coping with the international speculation, Chuene told the Cape Argus: "She is a very strong character. Her coach is there. And her father and mother are with her. You can call all the psychologists in the world, but what she needs is her parents. She is closer to them than the president of the ASA."

Chuene said Semenya would not be competing in any international races in the near future and was instead training "cross country" near her hometown of Masehlona, outside Polokwane in Limpopo.

Another ASA official, Phiwe Mlangeni-Tsholetsane, urged that the speculation about Semenya's sex end. In the meantime, she urged the runner to "be strong" and said she should be free to "exercise her God-given talent".

Last night, Dr Ross Tucker, an exercise physiologist and sports management consultant, explained the complex issues surrounding sex verification and said there were many grey areas.

One of the possible scenarios, he said, was that Semenya could have Androgen Insensitivity Syndrome (AIS). While the person would have a Y chromosome, testosterone and even internal testes, they would develop externally as a woman.

On the one side of the spectrum, testosterone could be produced, but will not be effective.

"Having testosterone is not enough. It must bind to the receptor to cause effect," he said.

Tucker said that in some cases, testosterone did not bind to the receptors and, in the case of a female athlete, she would not have an unfair advantage over other women. Therefore she would be allowed to compete against other women.

In Semenya's case, Tucker said that because of her deep voice, facial hair and athletic performance, there was a strong possibility that her testosterone had indeed bound with receptors.

But her condition could be detrimental to her health. If she did have internal testes, she would be advised to have them removed because of the risk of testicular cancer. Tucker said this could be why the IAAF was trying to get hold of Semenya.

Tucker lashed out at the way her situation had been dealt with.

He said that in the past three years, four out of eight athletes who were tested for sex verification had since retired. Nobody knew who they were because of the confidentiality that should have been af-forded to Semenya.

Tucker said the use of the word "hermaphrodite" was probably "not entirely accurate". This was because the classification of intersex conditions did not use the term much anymore, except in very rare cases, and this seemed unlikely to be one.

By Murray Williams, Esther Lewis and Angela Quintal

9 Opinion(s):

Anonymous said...

...hand me my barf bag because I'm about to lose my sushi...

..and now the fuckwads are threatening war against the iaaf..

What next?..take on the first world's armies?

Anonymous said...

I thought VI was being too kind about ASA and SANA's sports committee. I think the agenda is to play by their own "African" rules and call anyone who objects a racist. In which case they should not compete internationally.

drpat said...

its ok to be heshe and cheat to win. as long as you are black. the word"racist" can defend any force thrown at it

FishEagle said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
FishEagle said...

There is a story from my home town that goes that a black parent was approached by a school principle about the child's theft problem. When the principle asked the parent what the parent was going to do about it, the parent scolded/spanked the child shouting, 'Why did you get caught?!' In the black culture it is fine to cheat but it's wrong to get caught. It explains why the government is so corrupt to some extent.

Exzanian said...

Khompela said..."The IAAF must be held responsible; they must find out who is leaking information,"

ASA itself is guilty of perpetrating fraud here. How the hell this has been turned around from a fraudulant athlete and a lamentable lack of leadership (as always in South Kafrica)into a human rights issue is gobsmacking! But hey, let us remember who is in charge in SA. Let us recall too, that after achieving only 1 silver medal in the last Olympics, ASA, like any collective with kaffirs in charge, is a celebration of mediocrity. They tried to press this shemale into service thinking the world is too stupid to detect the fraud. Now they all run around with the red card held high. WAR!!! they say? Against what? Stupid, stupid Kaffir mentality.

Anonymous said...

A black African can never take accountability. The IAAF did not act irresponsibly. If you want to compete at international level, you know you may be required to subject yourself to all sorts of tests. When you get found out, it doesn't grant you the right to cry foul. But as far as black Africans are concerned, when you are caught then somebody has to pay ... preferably cash.

Anonymous said...

The other issue here, is that blacks do not understand the science. Somehow scientists cannot question the validity of Semenya's gender. Given that the science is white, it will be viewed as a conspiracy.

Quark said...

Once again the kaffirs are prepared to fight to the death over trivia to get the edge. Perhaps there's a lesson in this for whites.