NAIROBI, Feb. 18 (Xinhua) -- Former world marathon record holder, Paul Tergat, claimed on Monday that doping among Kenyan runners is isolated as opposed to being the widespread problem as alleged.
He subsequently called for accusations levelled against the country's runners to be treated as individual cases while refuting claims made by retired three-time world steeplechase champion Moses Kiptanui last week.
"It is wrong to generalise that all athletes are using or being encouraged to take drugs. Those are misplaced comments that are bringing disharmony in the country. I do not believe that is the case, I never come across anyone using them but I cannot say that it does not happen. We should treat every case as it comes," the five-time world cross winner said in Nairobi.
He was reacting to comments made by Kiptanui, who claimed last week that use of banned substances was rampant among the country's distance runners.
In an interview with BBC, Kiptanui further alleged performance enhancing and other proscribed drugs were being provided to the athletes through clinics in Nairobi and Rift Valley.
"What I want to see happening more is the education of the young athletes about drugs that are banned. Some get the banned substances over the counter."
"Few runners in this country have been found to have doped as compared to other countries and authorities concerned should ensure our runners are not cheated," the former marathon world record holder explained.
The spotlight has been on Kenyan distance runners since May last year when German television station ARD aired a documentary that claimed widespread substance abuse in the country.
Already, a Government commission to look into the establishments allegedly supplying the substances has been set up as the country awaits the outcome of dope test conducted on high profile runners in December.
World governing body IAAF also gathered samples from 32 elite runners to create a biological blood profile for future use.