In the most recent column by Pat Butcher, (http://www.globerunner.org/blog/?p=272), Mr. Butcher continues his very thoughtful consideration of the debacle surrounding Caster Semenya. From the superb journalism of Mike Hurst (Australia), Pat Butcher (Globerunner), the blog, The Science of Sports (www.sportsscientists.com), (InsidetheGames.bizand others, the real story of a young athlete, used by a sports federation for their own benefits, has been sent all around the world, for thoughtful readers to consider.
Here are the facts: Leonard Chuene, the president of ASA, knew about the gender testing request from the IAAF, knew about the actual gender testing of Caster Semenya, and went against advice NOT to send Caster to Berlin. Instead, Caster Semenya, won the World Championships, and before she hit the finish line, her victory was being questioned in the stadium. Leonard Chuene then told AP, and others, that he had no idea about the requests for testing, and that the furor around Caster Semenya was “racist”.
Leonard Chuene, Caster Semenya, photo courtesy of InsidetheGames.biz.
It has now become clear that Mr. Chuene was not telling the truth. The South African government has called for his resignation, as have leaders of the African Congress. RBR asked for Mr. Chuene to resign in this column two weeks ago.
Nothing has changed. ASA board is now supporting Leonard Chuene. Will Chuene resign? Who knows. Chuene has not only lied to the world media, he has put an 18 year old, Caster Semenya, and her life in the eyes of the world, in order for South Africa to gain one more medal.
In the end, this entire debacle could have been avoided if Chuene would have put the young athlete’s best interest in front of ASA winning another medal. In the end, an eighteen year old’s life has been destroyed and the ASA President still has a job, which, in my mind, he should not have. Leonard Chuene should not be president of the ASA, he has hurt South African athletics.
To sign up for GlobeRunner, click on http://www.globerunner.org
To sign up for InsidetheGames.biz, please click on http://www.insidethegames.biz
For more on the sport, please click on http://www.runningnetwork.com