London, Sep. 19 (ANI): Even before South African star athlete Caster Semenya’s gender was questioned at the World Championships in Berlin, Athletics South Africa (ASA) had found out and withheld the fact that she had internal testes, an e-mail exchange has revealed.
According to the e-mail exchanges published in the Mail and Guardian newspaper, ASA officials were aware of the findings of a Pretoria clinic that Semenya had internal testes and produced abnormal amounts of testosterone for a woman, Times Online reports.
It was ASA’s chief medical officer and team doctor, Harold Adams, who had suggested the need carrying out the tests on Semenya, 18, because of her deep voice, muscular body and facial hair, which later became a subject of controversy in Berlin.
Another email exchange shows that Adams later suggested that the results to be kept confidential while the South African team was in Berlin.
“Thinking about the current confidential matter, I would suggest we make the following decisions. 1. We get a gynae opinion and take it to Berlin. 2. We do nothing and I will handle these issues if they come up in Berlin,” the report quoted from Dr Adams’ email to ASA President Leonard Chuene and General Manager Molatelo Malehopo, as saying.
Following the IAAF establishing that Semenya was a hermaphrodite, South African officials not only angrily denounced it, but also denied carrying out their own tests.
Taking matters a step further, South African Sports Minister Makhenkesi Stofile lost his temper at a press conference and threatened to start a “third world war” if Semenya was banned from international competition because of her gender.
Earlier, Semenya’s ex-coach Wilfred Daniels had said the ASA had duped Semenya into thinking the gender test carried out on her were routine drug tests. (ANI)