KUALA LUMPUR – The authorities are investigating what caused a bout of food poisoning involving 16 Malaysian SEA Games athletes across various sports.
Southeast Asian Games Federation (SEAGF) president Tan Sri Tunku Imran Tuanku Jaafar, however, said that only one of them was warded at the Kuala Lumpur (HKL) Hospital and was expected to be discharged today. The Malaysian contingent is based at a leading hotel in Jalan Ampang.
He said officials from the Malaysia SEA Games Organising Committee (MASOC), Kuala Lumpur City Hall (DBKL), Health Ministry and National Sports Institute were looking into the incident.
Tunku Imran, who is also Olympic Council of Malaysia (OCM) president, did not rule out the possibility that the incident could have been caused by outside food consumed by the athletes.
“The menus are standardised in all hotels…It’s an athletes’ menu and depends on the sports and dietary requirement of the athletes,” he told press conference at the KL2017 media centre here today.
Hosts Malaysia have a 1,234-strong contingent including 844 athletes in this 29th edition of the Games from Aug 19 to 30.
Meanwhile, OCM secretary-general Datuk Low Beng Choo said further details on the matter can only be released after receiving a full report from the relevant authorities.
“It’s a bit difficult to identify the source (of the food poisoning) because the athletes represent different sports and are going to different venues as well. That’s why we want to be very careful as we don’t know the source yet,” she said.
On another matter, Tunku Imran said that those in charge of security should be more vigilant at events where tensions were high with the likelihood of unruly crowd behaviour.
“We’ll look at tightening security and those in charge of overseeing security should be more vigilant at these events. Inappropriate signs should be confiscated if possible,” he said.
On reported KL2017 transport issues, he said: “We know that transportation has not been perfect, it could be better and should be better.”
He noted that transport problems were not uncommon in multi-sports events including the Olympics. – BERNAMA