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    Congress sets inquiry into sale, use of banned drugs in wake of Ravena doping ban

    May 31, 2018
    Kiefer Ravena greets teammates inside the NLEX dugout on Wednesday. Jerome Ascano

    A RESOLUTION has been passed at the House of Representatives calling for a review of the various laws, rules, and regulations and their implementation regarding the education, sale, and use of banned substances by athletes in the wake of Kiefer Ravena's doping ban.

    Rep. Cristina ‘Chiqui’ Roa-Puno of the first district of Antipolo City, vice-chairperson of the House Youth and Sports Development, filed resolution No. 1915 saying there is a need to educate Filipino athletes and sports stakeholders on substances prohibited by the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA).

    The 24-year-old NLEX rookie and Gilas Pilipinas mainstay said he inadvertently consumed an over-the-counter dietary supplement which contained three substances banned under the WADA code during the last FIBA World Cup qualifiers.

    The inquiry, Puno said, intends to prevent Filipino athletes like Ravena from unknowingly ingesting prohibited substances which could adversely affect ‘their health and result in their suspension from their respective sports.’

    The investigation, being done in aid of legislation, comes ahead of the country's participation in three major international tournaments, namely, the FIBA 3x3 World Cup this June, the third window of the FIBA World Cup qualifier in July, and the Asian Games in August.

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      Officials of both the Philippine Sports Commission (PSC) under Chairman William ‘Butch’ Ramirez and the Philippine Olympic Committee (POC) headed by president Ricky Vargas, are expected to be invited to the inquiry.

      Vargas has called for an information campaign about the matter in light of the controversy regarding Ravena.

      “I appeal to all national sports associations to be constantly aware of the dire consequences of a lack of awareness and education on what substances are to be avoided,” said Vargas in a statement.

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      “Recently, I met with PSC chairman Butch Ramirez, and we jointly decided to ramp up our anti-doping program starting with random testing of our national athletes even outside of competition environment.

      “We also decided that the POC and PSC will partner for a massive information campaign on this issue,” added the POC president, who also happens to be the chairman of the PBA board.

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      Kiefer Ravena greets teammates inside the NLEX dugout on Wednesday. Jerome Ascano
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