By Ashley Sim
KUCHING, Aug 10: Minister for Youth, Sports, and Entrepreneur Development Dato Sri Abdul Karim Rahman Hamzah is unhappy with the headline of a national daily’s report regarding national diving queen Datuk Pandelela Rinong Pamg’s performance at the 2022 Commonwealth Games.
He noted the report’s headline contained the words “Pandelela pulang tangan kosong” (Pandelela returns empty-handed).
The Sarawakian diver did not make it to the podium at the recently concluded games in Birmingham, UK.
“I was disappointed when I saw the headline of an online national newspaper report today (yesterday) which said ‘Pandelela pulang tangan kosong’.
“There are many ways to write a headline, as someone who represents the country must have been training from morning to night, and here comes this type of headline.
“I am not a fanatic or overly supportive of our Sarawak athletes, but whether one is an athlete from Sarawak or other parts of Malaysia, we do not treat our national heroes like that, just because they did not win medals,” he said yesterday during a press conference after officiating at the 9th Asian South Pacific Association of Sport Psychology (ASPASP) International Congress at Borneo Convention Centre Kuching (BCCK) here.
He said athletes should not be treated like “tebu” (sugarcane), which is useful while still sweet but discarded once used.
“That is not how we should treat our national athletes. Have compassion for them as they have tried their best.
“So we don’t write this kind of thing,” Abdul Karim added. — DayakDaily