The National Union of Metalworkers of South Africa (NUMSA) declares its unwavering support for Caster Mokgadi Semenya and that she is #NaturallySuperior. She has spent this week at the Court of Arbitration for Sports (CAS) in Switzerland where she is challenging a decision by the racist, sexist IAAF. The international sporting federation changed its regulations last year to stipulate that women with elevated testosterone must take medication to reduce their hormone levels before they will be allowed to compete.
It is obvious that this campaign is targeting Semenya because it applies only to women competing in the 400 meters and 1500 meters races, which is where her true talents lie.
Caster is a two-time gold medallist Olympic winner in the 800 m race in 2012 and again in 2016; she has won two gold medals at the 2009 and 2017 World Championships for the 800 meters, and last year she smashed the world record in the Commonwealth Games and won gold after completing the 1500 m race in only four minutes. She is naturally phenomenal.
The IAAF is saying that derives a sporting advantage from her naturally high testosterone levels. As NUMSA we reject these ridiculous claims with the scientific contempt they deserve. Will we now start cutting down the legs of tall basketball players because they have an ‘unnatural’ advantage, because of their height? She has made incredible achievements without resorting to performance enhancing drugs, and in response, the sporting body wants to force her to pump unnatural, foreign substances into her body!
We reject the research and pseudo-science which has been concocted to justify their bigotry and racial prejudices. We will not allow them to tarnish the legacy of our global sporting icon. The court is expected to hand down a decision on this towards the end of March. As the largest trade union in South Africa, representing more than 370 thousand militant workers, we stand in solidarity with Caster and say #HandsOff!
Aluta continua!
The struggle continues!
Issued by Irvin Jim
NUMSA General Secretary
For more information, please contact:
Phakamile Hlubi-Majola
NUMSA National Spokesperson