No govt’s sports programmes until Oct 31

by SHAHEERA AZNAM SHAH / pic by ARIF KARTONO

THE Youth and Sports Ministry (KBS) has postponed all programmes organised under the ministry and its agencies until Oct 31, 2020, said its Minister Datuk Seri Reezal Merican Naina Merican (picture).

However, an exception was given to the daily training of athletes who are registered under the National Sports Council (NSC) and the National Sports Association (NSA) with tightened Covid-19 standard operating procedures (SOPs) in place.

“The development of positive Covid-19 cases in Malaysia is worrying our athletes, instructors, their families and those who are involved in the sports industry.

“As a proactive measure, the ministry has decided to postpone all programmes under the KBS and its agencies, while training of NSC and the NSA’s athletes can continue with SOPs and social-distancing practices in place,” he said in a statement.

He added that sports programmes that are not organised by the ministry are allowed to continue with directives from the Malaysian National Security Council (MKN) and Health Ministry (MoH).

Reezal Merican said athletes and instructors, who are undergoing training full-time and staying at NSC’s accommodation, are not allowed to travel back to their homes until Oct 31, unless they receive approval from the sports council.

“All athletes are required to follow the movement restrictions, which are limited to its accommodation, sports centres and nearby clinics beginning today until Oct 31.

“All athletes are only allowed to have an outing one day per week to one fixed location with their instructors,” he added.

Athletes, instructors and sports officers, who have a travel history to areas that are under the current Conditional Movement Control Order in Sabah, Klang and Kedah or any yellow and red zones, in the previous week, are not allowed to return to their accommodation and training centres until Oct 31.

“They are all required to wear a face mask and practise temperature screening whenever they are in the sports centres’ premises and accommodation.

“If their temperatures are above the average normal body temperature, they are required to report to the assigned officers.

“Also, if any of the athletes, instructors and sports officers are found to have close contact with positive Covid-19 individuals, or showing symptoms related to the coronavirus, they are required to report to the medical facilities at the sports centres,” he said.

He added that the instructions and the proactive measures are done to prevent and reduce the risk of the coronavirus infections, and ensure the athletes’ training would not be disrupted and continue in a conducive environment.

“All athletes, instructors and sports officer are advised to follow the latest direction from MKN and MoH and that the new normal practices are important in our move to break the chain of the pandemic,” he added.