International Ski Federation (FIS) President Gian-Franco Kasper believes the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) should stop making political decisions and focus on playing a direct drug testing role.
Kasper was speaking here ahead of the Olympic Summit in Lausanne on Saturday (October 8) at which discussions are due to take place on the future of the global anti-doping system.
The Swiss, a key ally of International Olympic Committee (IOC) President Thomas Bach, believes that WADA remains the key authority for overseeing the war on drugs but claimed that it has overstepped the mark with recent calls for strong punishments on those falling foul of the rules.
"I have my own ideas about this," the 72-year-old IOC Executive Board member told insidethegames when asked about the tension between WADA and the IOC.
"I have been long enough in the Executive Board of WADA to have my ideas about the restructuring and about what is necessary.
"It [WADA] should be a testing and technical body rather than making political decisions.
"Politics should not be in the hands of WADA.
"It was not the idea that WADA should be a political institution when it was set-up [in 1999].
"It should be leading the fight against doping.
"This fight against doping is, in my eyes, not a political fight.”
Longstanding tensions between anti-doping and sporting authorities erupted into the open in July when WADA called for a blanket ban of Russian athletes at Rio 2016 due to allegations of state-sponsored doping published in the McLaren Report that they commissioned.
The IOC resisted these calls and instead handed power to each International Federations to draw individual criteria for Russian eligibility.
WADA was then heavily criticised for proposing this "nuclear option" during the IOC Session in Rio de Janeiro in August, as well as for not solving Russian problems earlier.
WADA, in turn, have accused the IOC of deliberately attacking them in order to deflect criticism from themselves.
They also claim that they only received the power to launch investigations in the new version of the World Anti-Doping Code which came into force in January, 2015.
Both sides agree that reform is necessary and that a more "independent" system is required.
Kasper is due to attend the Summit via video-link from Asia where he is attending the ongoing IOC Coordination Commission inspection here and then next week's visit to 2022 host Beijing.
A major point of controversy is expected to surround a WADA call for greater sanctions for organisations deemed non-compliant with the World Anti-Doping Code, including an escalating system of fines and, eventually, suspensions.
This is something Kasper, a member of the WADA Foundation Board and Executive Committee since 2003, fiercely opposes.
"This code-compliance idea causes all kind of problems," he said.
"A country like Spain, for instance, might be code compliant today and not code compliant tomorrow."
Spain, host of next year's Freestyle World Ski Championships in Sierra Nevada, is currently non-compliant due to its anti-doping laws, which it is unable to change due to the current absence of a functioning Government.
The IOC initially recommended winter International Federations not to award events to Russia.
But they subsequently performed a quiet U-turn in which this was permitted so long as bidding processes for these events had already begun.
Kasper, who in 2014 became the first beneficiary of a new IOC rule allowing members to exceed the age limit of 70 for a maximum of five years while they remain a serving International Federation President, defended the International Biathlon Union's (IBU) recent decision to award their 2021 World Championships to Tyumen in Russia.
He claimed the IBU specifically asked the IOC, and WADA, if this was okay during a meeting in Rio - and that the IOC Sports Director Kit McConnell gave permission while WADA did not protest.
"This was not a mistake of biathlon," Kasper insisted.
WADA, who were represented at the meeting by director general Olivier Niggli and chief operating officer Frédéric Donzé, have since criticised the decision and claimed it risks the IBU being declared non-compliant.
IBU President Anders Besseberg has since said that they reserve the right to remove the Championships from Russia.
Further decisions are expected after the completion of McLaren investigation into alleged Russian doping at the 2014 Winter Olympics and Paralympics in Sochi, at some point before the end of this year.
"WADA was invited to this meeting of International Federations of Olympic Winter Sports in Rio to discuss the consequences of the independent McLaren report," a spokesperson has told insidethegames.
"WADA did not get involved in the specific discussion [at the meeting] in relation to IOC guidance to International Federations for the hosting of major events in Russia.
"The World Anti-Doping Code is very clear in this respect: it is the International Federations’ responsibility to 'do everything possible to award World Championships only to countries where the Government has ratified, accepted, approved or acceded to the UNESCO Convention and the National Olympic Committee, National Paralympic Committee and National Anti-Doping Organisation are in compliance with the Code'.
"Since November 18, 2015, the Russian Anti-Doping Agency has been deemed non-compliant with the Code.
"In light of this, WADA has sought further clarification from the IBU.
"We will decide on the way forward once we have received an answer."