Minister: Sarawak may host Sukma 2024

Abdul Karim speaks during a press conference while Dr Ripin looks on at the ‘Seluhur Kasih Sekalung Budi’ dinner held at the Waterfront Hotel in Kuching on Jan 20, 2023.

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By Nur Ashikin Louis

KUCHING, Jan 21: Sarawak may become the host for the Malaysian Games (Sukma) in 2024 if no other states are willing to take up the offer.

Sarawak Minister of Youth, Sports and Entrepreneur Development Minister Dato Sri Abdul Karim Rahman Hamzah said the Federal Minister of Youth and Sports Hannah Yeoh Tseow Suan on Jan 17, had chaired a meeting with all Youth and Sports excos throughout the country to deliberate on future plans including Sukma.

“It seems like, if there are no obstacles, Sarawak may be the host for Sukma 2024 because the supposed host has rejected the offer.

“No other state is willing to take up the offer at the moment. Therefore, I can say that we are most willing to handle it if given the opportunity,” he told reporters during ‘Seluhur Kasih Sekalung Budi’ dinner held at the Waterfront Hotel here last night.

Johor was supposed to host the 20th edition of Sukma in July 2020 but it was postponed due to the Covid-19 pandemic.

However, the 20th edition was taken over by the National Sports Council, Kuala Lumpur in September 2022.

It is believed that Johor is supposed to host Sukma in 2024 but Abdul Karim said the state may have become ‘tawar hati’ (discouraged) and does not want to hold the event anymore.

“The only state that has yet to host Sukma is Kelantan. Thus, Kelantan has been offered to host the event and we are still waiting for their response (on the offer).

“But the Kelantan exco said they might face a problem to host Sukma due to the unpreparedness in terms of time and facilities,” he added.

On Sarawak’s part, Abdul Karim said it is well prepared with all of their sport facilities except for a velodrome, which is scheduled to only be completed by 2026.

Also present were Deputy Minister of Entrepreneur Development Dr Ripin Lamat; Ministry of Youth, Sports and Entrepreneur Development (MYSED) permanent secretary Morshidi Frederick and the new Sarawak Museum Department director Nancy Jolhi who is MYSED’s former permanent secretary. — DayakDaily

Abdul Karim (fourth right) presents a Service Excellence Award to a recipient while others look on at ‘Seluhur Kasih Sekalung Budi’ dinner held at the Waterfront Hotel in Kuching on Jan 20, 2023.