The Brazilian government says that the issues that caused the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) to suspend the anti-doping lab in Rio de Janeiro have been solved, and that it expects the lab to re-open in time for the Summer Olympics.
SportsKeeda.com reports that Brazil’s sports minister, Leondardo Picciani, addressed the media in a press conference this week suggesting that the lab would be reopened before the Olympics next month:
“Since July 5, a WADA team has been visiting the lab. The problem that led the lab to be suspended has been identified and fully corrected,” said Picciani. “We now expect WADA to re-open the lab before the Olympic Games as all the conditions have been met.”
Picciani didn’t specifically address what issue caused the lab to get suspended less than a month ago. It is one of five anti-doping labs worldwide to have its WADA accreditation suspended or revoked within the past few months. WADA’s president said in May that the run of sanctions on anti-doping labs was a product of WADA’s improved anti-doping lab monitoring policies.
The Associated Press reports that WADA expects “a recommendation from the disciplinary committee in the coming days, and a decision by the chairman of WADA’s executive committee next week.” The AP also reports that the Brazilian sports ministry expects a decision even earlier than that.
The lab in Rio has had a history of trouble with WADA’s standards. Its accreditation was revoked in 2013 as well.
If the lab regains its accreditation, it will likely handle the anti-doping testing for the upcoming 2016 Olympics, testing around 5,000 blood and urine samples from athletes, according to SportsKeeda.com.