Abdul Karim: No rush to reopen state sports complexes

Abdul Karim addressing the press. (file photo).

KUCHING, May 17: The Sarawak government will not rush to reopen its sports complexes as it is still bound by the instructions given by the federal government, Tourism, Arts Culture, Youth and Sports Minister Datuk Abdul Karim Rahman Hamzah says.

Responding to the decision by the Sabah government to reopen almost all sports facilities and hostels on May 18 under the management of the Sabah Sports Board, Abdul Karim urged members of the public who want to undertake recreational activities to strictly adhere to the rules which have been approved by the authorities, including exercising in open areas and not engaging in any contact sports.

“Social distancing is still an important factor in curbing the spread of the Covid-19 virus. Sports such as football, swimming or physical activities in enclosed halls and gymnasiums are still not allowed. We must adhere to the rules that have been (approved) by the authorities and we also have adopted it for the state of Sarawak,” he said.

However, Abdul Karim gave assurance that the situation will not affect the preparations of Sarawak athletes participating in the Malaysia Games (Sukma) which has been postponed to next year as they will continue to train at their respective locations to maintain and maintain their current fitness level.

“So far, only golf clubs have started their operations in Sarawak and until today, many sports complexes are still being used by the Health Ministry (MOH) and the Sarawak State Disaster Management Committee (SDMC) which includes the Sarawak Youth and Sports Complex at Jalan Tun Ahmad Zaidi Adruce, Lawn Bowls Arena in Petra Jaya and Miri Indoor Stadium.

“Some civic centres that are managed and operated by the Youth and Sports Ministry are also being used as screening centers for Persons Under Surveillance (PUS) including as receiving centres for Institute of Higher Learning students returning from Peninsular Malaysia, Sabah and Labuan,” he added.

The Youth and Sports Ministry had also postponed or cancelled various programmes and activities previously scheduled to be held this year in the wake of instructions from the MoH and SDMC that do not allow the public to gather in large numbers in order to ensure social distancing is practised at all times. — DayakDaily