PETALING JAYA – The Youth and Sports Ministry will monitor the progress of the National under-23 football team in their preparation for the SEA Games in 2017 in Kuala Lumpur.
Its minister, Khairy Jamaluddin said the ministry would provide the allocation from time to time for the team.
“We will give attention to the under-23 team in the preparation for the coming SEA Games in Kuala Lumpur. As I have often said, we have to invest for the future,” he told reporters after closing the 2015 Fit Malaysia programme at Dataran Petaling Jaya here today.
He said the aim was for the team to win a gold for the country, but if they failed to do so, it would not reflect the failure of Malaysia’s contingent at the sports meet.
In another development, Khairy said it would depend on the Football Association of Malaysia (FAM) on the action to be taken against the senior team which lost 6-0 to Palestine in the 2018 World Cup/2019 Asian Cup Group A qualifying match at the Amman International Stadium in Jordan last Thursday.
“The ministry does not provide allocation to the senior squad. I don’t want the public to misunderstand the huge allocation given to the senior football team, they are from their (FAM) sponsors,” he added.
Meanwhile, Khairy said the ministry expected 100,000 people to register as volunteers for the coming SEA Games.
“I launched the volunteer programme yesterday and in a hour, 1,000 people had registered.
“I told them that those who have registered many not be accepted because we want volunteers who are committed. Screening will be conducted,” he said, adding that the ministry would need only 20,000 volunteers for the event.
The Fit Malaysia 2015 programme involved the participation of 15,000 people in various activities, like run, cycling and zumba.
The programme succeeded in making the people realise the importance of leading a healthy lifestyle and as such, it will continue to be organised next year, he said. – BERNAMA