Du Toit joins doping fight
Johannesburg - Paralympic legend Natalie du Toit has been appointed to the new board of directors at the SA Institute for Drug-Free Sport (SAIDS).
The anti-doping body said in a statement on Tuesday that single amputee swimmer Du Toit, a 14-time Paralympic gold medallist, was among those named to the new board, following the expiration of the five-year term of the previous board.
Other new members included SAIDS chairperson Victor Ramathesele, who was the chief medical officer for the 2010 FIFA World Cup, and Supreme Court Judge Lex Mpati.
Khalid Galant, the SAIDS chief executive, said sports minister Fikile Mbalula had also re-appointed three existing board members to a new five-year term - Mzwake Qobose, Harold Adam and Rochelle le Roux - to maintain continuity and preserve institutional knowledge.
"The minister has appointed members who are highly respected by their peers and represent a good mix of professional skills from law, medicine, public health and corporate governance," Galant said.
"The new board will steer the agency over the next five years to ensure it remains on the cutting edge of anti-doping matters in sport, and will continue to foster the growth of SAIDS as one of the leading anti-doping agencies in the world."
Galant believed the year ahead would be a busy one for the agency.
"During 2013 we will continue our aggressive targeted testing across all sports disciplines, which has proven successful, as evidenced by the number of athletes caught for doping infractions.
"SAIDS is also in the process of implementing the schools drug testing programme, targeted at addressing the growing scourge of steroid use among adolescents.
"We will also continue our efforts with regard to co-operation with law enforcement agencies to curtail the manufacture, importation and supply chain of prohibited substances."
South Africa would host the 2013 World Anti-Doping Conference in Johannesburg in November, SAIDS confirmed, where a new global anti-doping code would be adopted by sports authorities and international governments.