South Africa government officially backs Caster Semenya appeal
London, May 13, 2019 (AltAfrica)-The South African government said on Monday it was “instructing” the country’s athletics governing body to appeal the Court of Arbitration for Sport decision against Caster Semenya.
CAS ruled that the International Association of Athletics Federations (IAAF) could demand women runners with differences of sex development (DSD) take medication to lower naturally occurring high levels of testosterone before being allowed to compete in women’s races from 400m to a mile.
The ruling directly impacts athletes like Olympic 800m champion Semenya.
South Africa’s athletic body, Athletics South Africa (ASA) maintained silence on the matter but South Africa’s sports minister Tokozile Xasa, who has no direct authority over ASA, said in a statement she was making the instruction after receiving advice from a high-level panel.
Xasa’s claim followed a similar call from South Africa’s Olympic chiefs last week and she went a step further by confidently predicting ASA would appeal and then summarising three grounds for that appeal in her statement.
Semenya has until the end of May to appeal.