KUCHING: Sports associations in the state have been urged to look beyond state and national competitions and go international.
In making this call, Minister of Tourism, Arts, Culture, Youth and Sports Datuk Abdul Karim Rahman Hamzah said they should not only organise sports events at the state level but bring in more international competitions.
“By having more competitions of world standard, we not only further promote sports tourism which will also generate a lot of good things but also put Sarawak sports on the world map,” the minister said at the annual grants presentation ceremony at a local hotel on Friday.
Also present were Assistant Minister of Youth and Sports Snowdan Lawan, permanent secretary to Ministry of Tourism, Arts, Culture, Youth and Sports Datu Ik Pahon and Sarawak Sports Corporation chief executive officer Dr Ong Kong Swee.
A total of RM5,262,600 was given out to 38 associations (RM4,398,000) and eight youth bodies (RM864,000).
“We have to look far. We have to brand ourselves and think of how to bring our sports associations to a higher level,” he said, adding that consultative committees would be set up to help the state government develop sports, tourism and youth in Sarawak.
On the grants, Karim said it was a gesture of appreciation and recognition of the sports and youth bodies which had contributed towards youth and sports development.
“We know that your involvement in the sports/youth bodies are of voluntary nature and we thank you for contributing your time and even money. It’s the passion in you that made your sports successful,” he added.
The minister also hoped to see sports association officials to focus in their respective associations and not to hold too many posts in too many associations.
Karim advised the grant recipients to use the money wisely and make financial reports on how it is spent.
“If it is not spent wisely, next year the amount should be reduced. If you can spend it properly with good activities, it is only fair that you should be given more than what you are given this year,” he stressed. -TheBorneoPost