Penang’s Tan Gin Soon new national gymnastics federation boss

The Malaysian Gymnastics Federation (MGF) hopes to close ranks following the election of new office bearers on Saturday.

Incumbent Rachel Lau failed to turn up for the annual general meeting (AGM) and as a result, Penang’s Datuk Tan Gin Soon was elected unopposed as the new president.

“We informed Rachel about the AGM but she didn’t reply. We had to go ahead with it as we had already informed the Sports Commissioner’s Office (SCO),” said Tan, who has been president of Penang Gymnastic Amateur Association for over 18 years.

“During the meeting, we had representatives from the SCO, National Sports Council and Olympic Council of Malaysia who sat in as observers.

“Before the election of the officer bearers, we discussed Kau Git Kaur’s suspension. We concluded it was not valid as Rachel didn’t follow the proper procedures.”

Kau, who was Lau’s deputy, was suspended in January 2020 after he was allegedly linked to a drug party. He was subsequently released by the police without being charged.

His suspension, however, was not lifted until the AGM. He retained his post in the elections.

Kau insisted his suspension was unlawful after breaking his silence by speaking to Twentytwo13 last June.

Last October, seven of MGF’s 11 affiliates – Penang, Selangor, Perak, Negeri Sembilan, Sarawak, Melaka and Terengganu – declared they had lost confidence in Lau’s leadership.

As a consequence of their action, MGF secretary Afrita Ariany Nasril was removed from her post.

Lau defended her presidency, claiming the no-confidence vote was because she was trying to clean up the association.

Her critics denied that was the case and welcomed the involvement of the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) to investigate the national body’s accounts.

Efforts to contact Lau, who won the post uncontested in 2019, proved futile.

Separately, Tan said Kedah was the only affiliate that didn’t attend the AGM. Sabah and Sarawak did so via Zoom.

“We hope the new committee will work together for the betterment of the sport,” he said.

“We have a good mix of new office bearers, including some young blood.”

Afrita was reappointed secretary while there was no contest for the treasurer and women’s vice-president post.

MGF executive council

President: Tan Gin Soon

Deputy president: Kau Git Kaur

Vice-president: Datuk Azmi Abas, Francis Loh Soong Park and Lee Wan Nin

Secretary: Afrita Ariany Nasril

Treasurer: Margaret Chong

Committee members: Mike Ng Sik Hoi, Wong Chiew Lee, Eugene Ong Yu Qin, Nor Zuria Adilla Zulkepli, Hassan A. Rahman, Lim Hui Fun, Dr Teh Lah Hoong, Helena Christine Wee, Datuk Lee En Xiang and Florence Fung.

Internal auditors: G. Jaya Kumaran Govinda and Lo Joo Sim