The General Authority of Sports (GAS) launched an anti-doping campaign themed ‘Say no to doping’, in partnership with Dubai Policy and the UAE National Anti-Doping, as part of its participation in the Emirates Sports Medicine Conference (ESMC) 2023. The ESMC, which was held from May 13 to 14, 2023, at the Mohammed Bin Rashid University of Medicine and Health Sciences, Dubai, aimed at educating individuals in the field of sports medicine and science.
Together with its partners, the Authority set up a special pavilion at the conference, which was targeted at raising awareness regarding the dangers and risks associated with doping, as well as highlighting the significance of preventing doping to establish and promote fair and doping-free sports. Through this, the Authority intended to encourage sports ethics and values, boost the sector’s competitiveness and sustainability, as well as promote sports’ contribution to improving quality of life and ensuring healthier lifestyles for people of all ages.
H.E. Saeed Abdul Ghaffar, Secretary-General of the General Authority of Sports, said: “At General Authority of Sports, we are committed to promoting joint efforts and collaborating with our partners and other relevant entities to develop various aspects of sports in the UAE, in accordance with the directives of our wise leadership. By launching the ‘Say no to doping’ campaign, GAS aims to raise public awareness of the health hazards associated with doping, help build a healthy sports community, and educate professional athletes as well as the public about the advantages of clean and fair sports.”
He continued: “Our participation in the ESMC as a strategic partner underlines the Authority’s commitment to promoting sports medicine as one of the cornerstones of growth in the sports industry and increasing health awareness among athletes, in line with the government’s plans to improve safety and security in the sports industry.”
Dr. Mai Ahmed Al Jaber, the President of the National Antidoping Agency of the United Arab Emirates stated: ‘This campaign is part of the efforts undertaken by the GAS to improve medical awareness and understanding on doping, promote ethical sports, and establish a solid foundation for fair sports.”
Al Jaber added: “The campaign further demonstrates GAS’s confidence in the National Anti-Doping Agency as the national authority authorised to tackle doping-related issues. Additionally, this move further emphasises the significance collaboration in achieving the strategic goals of the sports sector.” Al Jaber lauded the Agency’s anti-doping initiatives as well as its various workshops and seminars, which help to ensure doping-free sporting events.
Dr. Mariam Al Matrooshi, President of the Dubai Police Athletes Council, said: “Doping trading is a very severe crime. Many young people are still unaware of the dangers and risks associated with using doping products. Because of this, many young people use untested or illegal products, as a result of which their health deteriorates, causing fatal outcomes.”
She added: “The Dubai Police General Command takes necessary action to address this harmful phenomenon through its several agencies and divisions. Promoting such products are severe crimes, including concealing goods and deceiving customers into believing that doping products are legal and effective.
ESMC’s inaugural event was co-hosted by GAS, the Dubai Police Athletes Council, and other partners. Experts from all around the world gathered at the Conference to discuss two key topics: football medicine and women’s sports.
ESMC sought to provide a significant learning platform for individuals in the domains of sports medicine and sciences. It also aimed at developing a scientific platform to disseminate the skills and expertise of sports medicine specialists to practitioners as well as to those with an interest throughout the UAE and the region. To strengthen the UAE’s distinguished position both regionally and internationally across all disciplines of the sports industry, the organising committee works to grow the Conference into a leading international event, by leveraging the country’s strategic location and cutting-edge infrastructure.
The Conference was attended by sports medicine, rehabilitation, and nutrition specialists, as well as psychologists and surgeons to raise awareness about sports injury prevention, encourage physical activity as a lifestyle, and better understand the existing evidence on enhancing female athletes’ performance.