New national sports vision to include women, grassroots and the industry

A 10-year national sports vision is on the cards with the goal of turning Malaysia into a sporting nation.

Youth and Sports Minister Datuk Seri Reezal Merican Naina Merican revealed that the vision will have new targets set between now and 2030.

“The national sports vision will include high-performance sports, grassroots development, focus on sports that have potential for glory in major tournaments, and the sports industry,” said Reezal.

“The vision will be inclusive.”

The Kepala Batas MP singled out the Podium Programme as an example.
“We fell short but it didn’t mean we failed. It needs to be improvised and we are looking at the details.

“Also the Podium Programme lumps all the major tournaments. Maybe we need some dedicated programmes to ensure we are more focused in our approach,” Reezal said on TV1’s Planet Sukan talk show last night.

He added the new vision will also have a national blueprint for talent identification.

While a national sports vision is much welcomed, it remains unclear if there will be continuity.

History has shown ministers are often eager to leave legacies during their stints by ignoring or downplaying programmes by their predecessors.

Reezal, however, seems eager to continue what previous Youth and Sports Ministers have implemented.

This includes encouraging more women in sports and strengthening Malaysia’s sports industry – programmes which were focused by Datuk Seri Azalina Othman Said and Datuk Seri Ahmad Shabery Cheek respectively during their tenures at the Youth and Sports Ministry.

“Women are influencers … if mothers are involved (in sports), there is a likelihood that the whole family will participate.

“So it’s best to get women involved (in sports).”

Reezal was quick to admit that the main focus at present is to assist the government to stabilise the nation’s economy due to the Covid-19 pandemic.

“The first thing we need to sort out is the economy. If there is no money, how are people expected to spend?

“There is no point having incentives if people are not spending,” he added.
Reezal added the government needs to provide incentives to those who invested in sports.

“If a company builds a futsal court for the people, then the company should be given tax incentives. Sports isn’t just the government’s responsibility. Even the private sector and government-linked companies should be involved.

“The only tax incentive related to sports in the 2021 Budget is the lifestyle tax which has been increased from RM2,500 to RM3,000. Tax incentives for those who help build facilities are being discussed and looked into by the Finance Ministry.”

He added sports belonged to the people and as such more facilities must be built nationwide to further excite the sports industry.

“I was in Trolak recently. The town has produced at least nine national hockey players and several Olympians.

“But the school hockey turf in Trolak Utara is in a deplorable state. It’s time we give back to the town that has done so much to the nation.”

He admitted there were blind spots in the development of sporting facilities in the country.

“We need to democratise sports … what this means is to ensure people have access to sports facilities.

“In the cities, there are many privately owned facilities. We need to see such facilities in other areas in the country as well,” he added.

Here’s the round-up of The News Normal today.

28 TOP GLOVE FACTORIES TO BE TEMPORARILY CLOSED IN STAGES

The National Security Council has instructed that 28 Top Glove factories be temporarily closed in stages following a spike in Covid-19 cases among its workers.

This is to allow the workers to be tested for Covid-19 and quarantined.

“Top Glove has many small factories, 28 of them, and this decision was made following feedback from the Health Ministry,” said Senior Minister Datuk Seri Ismail Sabri Yaakob.

“The Selangor Security Council Committee will work with the company’s management to ensure that all workers are tested.”

JOHOR GOVT FORWARDS PROPOSAL TO ALLOW DAILY TRAVEL INTO MALAYSIA AND SINGAPORE

A proposed standard operating procedure (SOP) has been drawn up by the Johor government with the help of the state health department to allow daily commute between Malaysia and Singapore.

This is because a large number of Malaysians, who are staying in Malaysia, travel to Singapore daily for work.

However, since the Covid-19 pandemic caused lockdowns worldwide, many Malaysians have been forced to stay on the streets in Singapore as they cannot afford the high rent and are afraid they may lose their jobs if they return to Malaysia.

Ismail Sabri revealed the proposal has been sent to the Health Ministry which will hold discussions with its counterparts in Singapore before the foreign ministries of both nations discuss the plan in more detail.

COMPAY DIRECTOR, CONTRACTOR FACE LIFE JAIL TERM OVER SG SELANGOR CONTAMINATION

A company director and a road contractor linked to the Sungai Selangor contamination were charged under Section 124K of the Penal Code – the first individuals to be charged with sabotaging water services in Selangor.

R. Nathan and Lim Kian Aik, both aged 42, pleaded not guilty at the Selayang Sessions Court today.

The offence carries a sentence of life imprisonment upon conviction.

PEOPLE THE BIGGEST LOSERS IN KL ‘LAND GRAB’ FIASCO

Public Accounts Committee report on blatant disregard for rules in sale of land in Kuala Lumpur shows there are two sets of rules – one for those in power and another for the people.