LAMINE DIACK, the president of the International Association of Athletics Federations, plans to travel to South Africa for a face-to-face meeting with Caster Semenya to explain the results of her gender verification test.Semenya, whose 800 metres victory at the World Championships in August has been overshadowed by the row over her ambiguous gender, has yet to be notified about the medical examination she underwent following her triumph in Berlin, despite leaked reports that she is a hermaphrodite, with both male and female sexual organs.The test results are still being scrutinised by scientific experts and lawyers, but Diack hopes to be in a position to fly to South Africa to meet the 18-year-old before the end of the month. His personal involvement reflects the high importance the IAAF attaches to resolving the controversy and, as an African himself, his presence could help diffuse some of the racial tensions that have attended the case.In the immediate aftermath of Semenya’s gender test, Leonard Chuene, the president of Athletics South Africa, said: ”Who are white people to question the make-up of an African girl? I say this is racism, pure and simple.”The trip would also give Diack an opportunity to build bridges with the South African government, which has been highly critical of the IAAF’s handling of the affair.Semenya has also engaged an American law firm to advise her on human and civil rights matters and is considering taking legal action against the world governing body for breaching her right to confidentiality.Diack hopes to discuss with Semenya the implications of her gender test results, though the issue of whether she will be allowed to keep her gold medal and the $US60,000 ($66,000) prize money will not be resolved until the IAAF council rules on the case at its meeting in Monaco on November 20. The IAAF had initially indicated that Semenya would not be stripped of her title because there had been no intention to cheat on her part.However, Chuene’s subsequent admission that a gender test was carried out on the teenager in South Africa before the World Championships has raised concerns that the country’s athletics officials were aware of her medical condition but chose to suppress the information. The IAAF has never seen the results of the South African gender test.The conduct of Athletics South Africa is being investigated by the country’s Olympic committee and Semenya, her coach Michael Seme and team doctor Harold Adams are due to give evidence this weekend. Telegraph, London
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