Sports a priority for new KL education department chief

In January 2020, the body mass index (BMI) of student athletes at the Bukit Jalil Sports School was recorded.

The Movement Control Order was enforced barely two months later due to the Covid-19 pandemic as schools were forced shut. When schools reopened in June for fifth and sixth formers, another round of BMI testing was done.

“From that test, 80 per cent of the students have become successful entrepreneurs in breeding fat,” said Zainal Abas, who was then the Education Ministry’s Sports, Curriculum and Arts Unit head.

“Others have increased in muscle mass too but imagine this … if a bulk of student athletes, who have been training remotely, saw their BMI shoot up, an increase is also expected in other children too.”

Zainal, who is now the Kuala Lumpur Education Department director, said there is an exercise programme on the newly launched DidikTV where students can follow exercise routines to ensure they stay healthy and active.

“Cergas Bersama Intan is aired between 7am and 7.30am. There are repeats and the programme is also available on YouTube,” said Zainal.

“I hope our children will view the programme and get active.

“For sports in schools to resume, it will really depend on the numbers (of Covid-19 cases).”

Zainal said the initial plan to hold the Malaysia Schools Sports Council (MSSM) meet in June seems unlikely now as it’s already March and the districts and states have yet to organise any sporting events.

“The back-up plan is to hold the meet in September and if the numbers don’t spike, we could see sports returning to schools soon.”

Most sporting activities are now allowed as most states observe either the Conditional Movement Control Order or the Recovery Movement Control Order.

Zainal added that Kuala Lumpur’s talent identification programme is similar to that of the National Sports Council.

“There are 33 schools that serve as district training centres which are also for students from neighbouring schools who make the cut.

“I need to look at the 33 centres and those that are not effective will be removed as there is no point spending money if the goal (of producing talents) is not achieved.”

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

1,063 COVID-19 CASES TODAY – LOWEST IN 2021

Malaysia recorded 1,063 Covid-19 cases today, the lowest number of daily cases this year.

Selangor saw the highest number of cases (323) followed by Sarawak (183) and Penang (175). Perlis and Putrajaya did not record a single case today.

ANWAR’S ADVICE AFTER COVID-19 JAB

Opposition leader Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim received his Covid-19 vaccination at Klinik Kesihatan Kuala Lumpur this morning.

He thanked the health workers and urged the public to register for the vaccination via the MySejahtera mobile application.

“I also hope the people will realise the importance of the vaccine and read more about it. It is important for us to get out of this sick period so that we can rebuild and restore the country’s economy,” he said.

TOP GLOVE DIRECTOR CLAIMS TRIAL OVER UNCERTIFIED WORKERS’ HOUSING

A Top Glove Sdn Bhd director, representing the company, claimed trial at the Ipoh Sessions Court to 10 counts of failing to get its workers’ accommodation certified by the Labour Department.

According to the charges, the company had provided its foreign workers with accommodation that did not have a Certificate of Accommodation from the department’s director-general as required under Section 24D(1) of the Workers’ Minimum Standards of Housing and Amenities Act 1990.

The offences were committed at 10 different places of accommodation at Pusat Perdagangan Tasek Mutiara, in Ipoh between 9am and 1.30pm on Nov 26, last year.

If found guilty, the company can be fined up to RM50,000.

POLICE RAID BITCOIN MINING HUBS IN KEPONG

Three men were arrested after police and Tenaga Nasional Bhd (TNB) busted five Bitcoin mining facilities at Jalan Metro Perdana Timur 8 in Kepong, today.

Electricity cables were illegally rerouted to power the machines at the said premises.

Around 270 Bitcoin mining devices were seized. Sentul OCPD Asst Comm Beh Eng Lai said TNB had estimated losses as high as RM22,000 at each premise.

EIGHT RTD PERSONNEL PICKED UP OVER GRAFT CASE

Eight Road Transport Department (RTD) enforcement personnel were among 10 arrested by the Kedah Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission following a graft probe involving operators and employees of a transportation company.

The suspects, aged between 29 and 63, were picked up in Alor Setar and Kulim yesterday.

They were detained for alleged involvement in giving and receiving bribes from operators and employees of a transportation company so that action would not be taken against its who had committed offences.

IF MALAYSIAN MEDIA DON’T PROVIDE COVERAGE FOR LOCAL SPORTS, WHO ELSE WILL?

The Malaysian press should not pay much attention to foreign sports and focus on local sports instead to help rebuild the industry which has been crippled by the Covid-19 pandemic, writes Ghaz Ramli.