11 months after winning the 2012 Comrades Marathon, Ludwick Mamabolo can finally enjoy the full rewards of his win. Mamabolo tested positive for a banned substance, a case ensued and months later, he is declared not guilty. This is all too confusing for me, both his A and B blood samples tested positive for a banned substance, I then do not know how we get to the not guilty verdict. Judging by our social feeds, this confusion is not ours only, those who have been following the case closely share the same levels of confusion and while some seem rather angered by the outcome.
We had a short conversation with CMA GM Gary Boshoff, this is what he had to say about the case;
Running Matters (RM): What does this outcome mean for CMA?
Gary Boshoff (GB): The CMA is relieved that this matter has now finally been resolved and that the winner of the 2012 Comrades Marathon can take his rightful place among the elite of former Comrades Marathon winners.
RM: Do you believe justice was done?
GB: The CMA entrusts the dope testing process to the South African Institute for Drug-free Sport and accepts the outcome of the process. We are happy that it has been completed and that we are now in a position to crown our 2012 champion, Ludwick Mamabolo.
RM: Both the samples tested positive, that on its own was strong evidence. Technicality vs Solid evidence. Fair?
GB: The case was heard by an independent tribunal appointed by SAIDS. The tribunal weighed all the evidence and ruled in favour of Mr. Mamabolo. As the event owner we are satisfied that this has been a fair process.
RM: “They found there was a system failure in the Comrades doping process..” Apparently the Comrades doping system is a fail. What is your response to this?
GB: It refers to the doping process (system) employed by SAIDS at the Comrades Marathon. You should address this question to SAIDS.
RM: Mamabolo’s lawyers stated in a statement that they “identified 14 or 15 irregularities in the sample process.” What is the CMA’s response to these apparent identified irregularities?
GB: Again: It refers to the dope testing process employed by SAIDS. You should address this question to SAIDS.
I remain on the fence, perhaps we should get the SAIDS to answer some of the unanswered questions. What are your thoughts on this?