Ravele throws punches at IAAF

SAWASF chairwoman Muditambi Ravele. / Veli Nhlapo
SAWASF chairwoman Muditambi Ravele. / Veli Nhlapo

Miffed chairwoman of the South African Women and Sports Foundation (SAWASF) Muditambi Ravele is the latest high-profile administrator to tear into the International Association of Athletics Federations' (IAAF) controversial female classification rules.

The athletics governing body recently passed a new regulation that compels
women athletes who naturally produce high testosterone
levels to lower it using medication. "IAAF should be stopped before they stifle athletes and kill athletics, including the massive appeal the sport
generates," argued Ravele.

"It appears to target a selected group of athletes over others.

"We, the SAWASF, join hands with all individuals and organisations in condemning the new regulations that the IAAF wants to impose on a select few events in which Caster Semenya participates.

"We urge UN Women, sport federations, human rights organisations, gender commission and ordinary citizens of the world to unite in fighting the IAAF's decision to
impose these discriminatory regulations," she added.

Ravele said South Africa has a Bill of Rights which enshrines the rights of everyone.

"Be it man or woman, all races are to be treated fairly and in a non-discriminatory fashion," she said.

Ravele said throughout history, great athletes are born who rise above their peers for as long as they are fit, healthy and possess extraordinary talent.

"Is the IAAF now saying that it wants to regulate what human beings have naturally been imbued with from birth?

"We would like to see how the IAAF will be able to control those who are still to be better than Caster for the sake of levelling the playing field.

"We are worried that when we begin to change the rules where natural talent is a contributor to excellence, we are playing God," Ravele said.

Athletics SA have threaten to oppose the IAAF rule through the Court of Arbitration for Sport.

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