WADA’s Scott won’t partake in bullying investigation
Athletes’ representative Beckie Scott will not participate in the inquiry over her bullying allegations against officials at the World Anti-Doping Agency, insisting WADA’s rebooted effort to look into the matter lacks transparency and is “akin to a kangaroo court.”
Attorneys for Scott and U.S. Anti-Doping Agency chairman Edwin Moses, who says he witnessed the bullying, sent a letter to the legal firm WADA hired to sort through the incident, saying they would not conduct interviews with investigators.
Among their complaints are that the law firm WADA hired is representing the agency on another matter, and that Scott and Moses aren’t allowed to question WADA president Craig Reedie and director general Olivier Niggli.
Scott, an Olympic cross-country skiing champion from Canada, says she was harassed for not signing onto WADA plans to reinstate Russia’s anti-doping agency from suspension. An initial investigation into her claims found no bullying but did not include interviews with Scott . After questions arose about the thoroughness of WADA’s first investigation, the agency arranged another, though Moses and Scott say it still lacks transparency.
“Having orchestrated the whitewash, WADA should have bent over backwards to do the right thing this time around,” said the letter sent to WADA.
But the letter says WADA did not agree to the conditions Scott and Moses had set to be interviewed.
WADA said in a news release Friday that it was unfortunate that Scott and Moses “have refused to cooperate with the very process they themselves called for.”
The agency said it chose the law firm Covington & Burling LLP based on its track record of conducting independent investigations such as this, and that it did not give the firm any orders as to who it could interview or how to conduct the probe.
The report on the bullying allegation is expected at next month’s WADA Foundation Board meeting where a new president is expected to be chosen.
The last meeting, in November, was dominated by news of the bullying case and came before Russia had allowed WADA access to the data.
WADA’s decision to reinstate Russia before it had received the data was at the crux of Scott’s disagreement. She resigned her spot on the compliance review committee after that committee recommended WADA take that action, but she remains at WADA as chairwoman of the athlete’s commission.
Russia missed the Dec. 31, 2018, deadline to turn over the data, but WADA did gain access to the data three weeks later and is reporting progress in sorting through the trove of information. The data could be used to corroborate doping positives that were uncovered in an investigation into a widespread doping conspiracy in the country designed to help Russians at the 2014 Sochi Olympics and other key events.