Experts call for forensic audit on multi-million ringgit elite sports programme

A team of sports administrators and former athletes recommends that the RM480 million Podium Programme undergo a forensic audit.

Twentytwo13 revealed yesterday that the Podium Programme Enhancement Committee made damning findings on what contributed to the downfall of the multi-million ringgit programme which “had a built-in deficit from the start“.

Launched in 2016 in an effort to win the elusive Olympic gold medal, the programme came under the microscope following the national contingent’s forgettable outing in the 2018 Asian Games and Commonwealth Games.

“The Panel strongly believes that the audit report issued by the Internal Audit Unit of the Youth and Sports Ministry in respect of the Podium Programme should be re-examined,” the committee said in its report.

“We recommend that a forensic audit be carried out and that further action be taken as required.”

Led by former National Sports Institute (NSI) chief executive officer Datuk Dr Ramlan Aziz, the committee was tasked to dissect the programme and make recommendations based on interviews with 32 people, including coaches and elite athletes. The committee presented its report to Youth and Sports Minister Datuk Seri Reezal Merican Naina Merican last September.

The committee, which was formed last August, comprised Datuk Megat Zulkarnain Omardin, Datuk Nazifuddin Najib, Datuk Jasni Shafie, Maninderjit Singh, Tang Kwai Mae and Nik Razeen Adam Daud. They also listed several other long-term recommendations to ensure the Podium Programme meet its objectives.

The committee also recommended that a new target system be based on performance instead of medal count.

“Example, a new Asian Games record should be valued substantially more than a SEA Games gold medal,” the committee said in the report.

Other suggestions put forward by the team of experts include:

  • The National Sports Associations must be empowered and be held accountable (for the performances of their athletes).
  • Proactive and transparent media and communication management.
  • Improved funding system and financial management to ensure there are check and balance, transparency and adherence to government procedures.
  • Athletes and coaches contribute to Employees Provident Funds (EPF) to ensure they have savings once they retire.

“The Panel believes a decision on the recommended options for the future of the Podium Programme is implemented by December 2020. The process of implementation shall begin by January 2021 to spearhead the two key multi-sports events – the 2022 Birmingham Commonwealth Games and the 2022 Hangzhou Asian Games.

“Ultimately, it is to invest in the right persons for the right positions”, embodying the principles of excellence to take the Podium Programme and Malaysian sports to world-class status and sustain its prime position,” the committee said.

Till today, the ministry has kept mum over the findings of the report. The ministry is instead working on the soon-to-be-launched National Sports Vision 2030.

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


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Muhyiddin said collaboration and strategic cooperation at the international level will also put the Royal Malaysia Police at par with security forces in other countries such as Scotland Yard, the Royal Military Police United Kingdom, and the Hong Kong Police Force.

Speaking in conjunction with the 214th Police Day Celebration at the Police Training Centre in Kuala Lumpur, the prime minister said it was also important to focus on character-building to have a force with high integrity and discipline.


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“I would like to stress that the elderly, high-risk groups, the disabled, and those with chronic illnesses are still being prioritised in the second phase,” said Science, Technology and Innovation Minister Khairy Jamaluddin.

“I will announce the agreed groups on Monday,” Khairy said after attending the Selangor Covid-19 Immunisation Task Force meeting in Shah Alam.


Datuk Ahirudin Attan has retained his post as National Press Club of Malaysia (NPC) president for the 2021-2023 term.

Ahirudin, who is Petra News executive director, won the seat unopposed at the club’s 29th annual general meeting last night.

Twentytwo13‘s editor Haresh Deol was also returned unopposed as deputy president for a second term while managing editor Pearl Lee remained as the club’s committee member.

Twentytwo13′s executive editor Graig Nunis was named internal auditor together with The Star columnist M. Veera Pandiyan.

Founded in 1948, NPC is the oldest media club in the country. Membership is open to journalists and individuals and corporate bodies associated with the media.


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