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Khairy Jamaluddin

KUALA LUMPUR – Youth and Sports Minister Khairy Jamaluddin described the death of former National coach Karl Heinz Weigang from Germany due to a heart attack, today as a big loss to football in the country and the region.

Khairy when offering his deepest condolences over the passing of the German coach at the age of 81, said Weigang’s name was synonymous with football throughout the world.

“Weigang was a very popular coach in the region and was instrumental in Malaysia qualifying for the 1980 Moscow Olympics. His absence will be deeply felt. I would like to offer my deepest condolences to his family,” said Khairy after a TN50 Dialogue with sports personalities at the National Sports Council in Bukit Jalil, here today.

Weigang had also led Perak to emerge as Malaysia Cup champions in 1998 and 2000.

Meanwhile, in IPOH, the Perak Football Association (PAFA) said it was a sad week for football in the state after the death of two prominent personalities in football, since former Datuk Raja Ahmad Zainuddin Raja Omar had passed away last week.

“Both Weigang and Raja Ahmad had formed a formidable partnership as coach and team manager to lead Perak to glory in the past. We are saddened by their passing,” said PAFA president Datuk Seri Abdul Puhat Mat Nayan when contacted by Bernama today. – BERNAMA

KUALA LUMPUR – When Indonesia, Malaysia, the Philippines, Singapore and Thailand established ASEAN 50 years ago, they aimed to establish greater political stability in the region.

The next half a century will be about the ability of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations to mark economic greatness and the biggest challenge for the region is to move forward to meet the expectations of a whole new generation, said Youth and Sports Minister Khairy Jamaluddin.

Noting that the younger generation of ASEAN aspires to a better life, an ever-higher standard of living, he said they are generally better educated, more tech-savvy and they believe in the benefits of ASEAN membership.

“We must strive to ensure ASEAN can become a catalyst for inclusive growth, better jobs, better education opportunities and investment in infrastructure that will result in ever-higher standard of living for this generation.

“Herein lies the challenge to meet the trust and expectations in the next 50 years. Addressing the economic concern of people, especially the young ones, is key in building ASEAN’s economic greatness,” he said in his keynote address at the ASEAN 50I50 Symposium: Projecting the Future of a Community, here today.

He said regardless of what the future global scene holds, be it another group of superpowers or new sets of jobs, ASEAN’s future will forever be bright if the younger generations have a sense of belonging to the 50-year old association.

“To do that, we need to engage them because we would not know what they want if we don’t ask them. But, more importantly, they will not care about ASEAN if we don’t ask them their shared goal for this region.

“And if they do not care, we will be under-utilising the strongest asset of ASEAN, which is the people. Our leaders have led ASEAN on a great journey for the past 50 years but the next 50 years will be charted by every single young people of ASEAN,” he said.

Held by the Institute of Strategic and International Studies (ISIS) in conjunction with ASEAN’s 50th anniversary this year, the symposium aimed to critically review ASEAN’s milestones and, importantly, its readiness to anticipate medium to long-term challenges.

Khairy also shared the Malaysian experience engaging with the younger generation in its national discourse series towards shaping the National Transformation 2050 (TN50).

According to him, two key lessons he learned from the youth engagement process of TN50 were that the future of Malaysia relies dominantly on young Malaysians and that young Malaysians care about the future of Malaysia if they were engaged.

The TN50 was announced by Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak while tabling Budget 2017 in the Dewan Rakyat on Oct 21 and is coordinated by the Youth and Sports Ministry. – BERNAMA

JOHOR BAHRU – The Youth and Sports Ministry will leave it to the Foreign Ministry to decide whether the national football squad can leave for Pyongyang to play in a 2019 Asian Cup qualifIier.

North Korea is set to play host to Malaysia in the much anticipated match in Pyongyang on June 8.

Youth and Sports Minister Khairy Jamaluddin said this is because the Foreign Ministry is responsible for handling the travel of Malaysians abroad.

“The Foreign Ministry determines our (government) policy in respect of travel restrictions. I have told them to inform the Football Association of Malaysia (FAM) of the government’s stand.

“I just oversee sports. When it comes to travel to foreign countries, it is better to leave it to the Foreign Ministry, ” he said commenting on the statement by FAM president Tunku Ismail Sultan Ibrahim who disagreed with the decision to go to Pyongyang for the match.

He was met at the Torch Run of 29th SEA Games (Kuala Lumpur 2017) and the 9 th ASEAN PARA Games in the compound of Muzium Tokoh Johor in Bukit Senyum, here, today.

Khairy said the Foreign Ministry would issue a statement on the issue after holding talks with the Youth and Sports Ministry.

Tunku Ismail is against the national squad going to Pyongyang for the match because of serious security issues in North Korea.

He requested that the match be played in a neutral country, thereby ensuring that Malaysia does not forfeit the match and be punished via a fine or expulsion by the Asian Football Confederation (AFC). – BERNAMA

PUTRAJAYA – The Youth and Sports Ministry has requested the Foreign Ministry to review the latest situation in North Korea and the need to issue a travel advisory on the country.

This followed fears raised by the Football Association of Malaysia (FAM) president Tunku Ismail Sultan Ibrahim on the safety of Harimau Malaya playing in Pyongyang for the 2019 Asian Cup qualification on June 8.

Its minister, Khairy Jamaluddin (pix) said he had contacted Wisma Putra on the matter and a decision would be announced soon.

“A travel advisory is something serious and it should not be issued as it can affect the thawing bilateral relations.

“There are many things to be considered. The security of our people is a priority and it included our team if we have to go there. We will not compromise on the security of our people.

“At the same time, any decision made should not affect our bilateral relations. So give a little bit more time to review the latest position as so far there is no official advice which does not encourage Malaysians in the form of a travel advisory. AFC only recognises the official travel advisory of the government,” he said.

He told reporters after signing sponsorships for 29th SEA Games and the 9th Asean Para Games here today.

In this regard, Khairy said he respected the decision made by Tunku Ismail who voiced his disagreement to send the national team to Pyongyang for the match.

However, he declined to comment on the issue of treatment and accommodation as well as food raised by Tunku Ismail.

“We respect his decision based on the security factors. It is just that we as the government have to evaluate from various aspects,” he said.

On Monday, the Asian Football Confederation (AFC) announced that Malaysia would face North Korea for the 2019 Asian Cup qualification in Pyongyang on June 8.

The decision was reached after FAM confirmed there was no travel restriction imposed by the government.

However, the president of FAM in a media statement today expressed his reservations on the safety of the national squad following tense diplomatic situation between North Korea and other countries.

The Malaysian squad was scheduled to face North Korea at the Kim Il-sung Stadium in Pyongyang on March 28 but the government prohibited the team from travelling there for security reasons.

This followed tense diplomatic relations between the two countries after the murder of Kim Jong-nam, the half-brother of North Korean leader Kim Jong-un at KL International Airport 2 (klia2) on Feb 13. – BERNAMA

KUALA LUMPUR – Youth and Sports Minister Khairy Jamaluddin hopes North Korea can assure the safety of Harimau Malaya (national squad ) who will travel to Pyongyang for the 2019 Asian Cup qualifying match on June 8.

“The tension between Malaysia and North Korea may be over but the country (North Korea) is facing several issues involving the outside world.

‘ I hope the match can take place and the national team will return safely. The AFC (Asian Football Confederation) decision has to be followed,” he told reporters after attending a 2017 SEA Games event, here today.

The AFC has announced that Malaysia would play against North Korea in an Asian Cup qualifier on June 8 in Pyongyang after the Football Association of Malaysia (FAM) confirmed that there is ban on travel to North Korea.

Malaysia was scheduled to play against North Korea in Pyongyang on March 28 but the government banned the national team from going there for security reasons. – BERNAMA

KUALA LUMPUR – Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak is satisfied with the progress of Kuala Lumpur Sports City (KL Sports City) project, the main venue of the 29th SEA Games ( Kuala Lumpur 2017) and the 9th ASEAN Para Games.

Youth and Sports Minister Khairy Jamaluddin said the prime minister who inspected National Stadium yesterday stressed that the upgrading of the sports complex would benefit the athletes and spur the development of sports at national level.

“I can conclude that Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib is very satisfied with the upgrading work of the sports complex,” he told reporters after launching the 100 days count down to Kuala Lumpur 2017 at KL Sentral today.

The upgrading work for Kuala Lumpur 2017 involves the infrastructure at the sports complex in Bukit Jalil such as the National Stadium, the Aquatics Centre and the Axiata Arena, formerly known as Putra Stadium.

The sports facilities at KL Sports City are expected to open in July, one month before the start of Kuala Lumpur 2017, scheduled to be held from Aug 19 to 30 and the ASEAN Para Games from Sept 17 to 23.

Khairy said the SEA Games sponsorship has reached RM71 million and was confident that the Malaysia SEA Games Organising Committee (Masoc) can meet the RM80 million target. – BERNAMA

PUTRAJAYA – Petroliam Nasional Bhd (Petronas) has come in as the platinum sponsor of the 29th SEA Games and 9th ASEAN Para Games, officially known as Kuala Lumpur 2017 or KL2017, with a total sponsorship worth RM15 million.

Youth and Sports Minister Khairy Jamaluddin said today the oil and gas company would be known as the Official Fuel Partner of the games, providing sponsorship that encompasses cash, goods, services and marketing support.

Petronas would also issue the Touch ‘n Go Mesra Card and the Petronas Gift Card KL2017 Special Edition that would be made available at selected Petronas stations nationwide from June, he said.

The people can also purchase KL2017 official goods such as the RIMAU mascot doll, drink container and fridge magnet from July, he added.

“The Petronas Primax fuel, created with the Advanced Energy Formula, will be used by 300 official vehicles of KL2017,” he said in his speech at the signing of the sponsorship papers between Petronas and the Malaysia SEA Games Organising Committee (MASOC) here.

The documents were signed by MASOC Secretariat CEO Datuk Seri Zolkples Embong and Petronas Senior General Manager of Group Strategic Communications Zahariah Abdul Rahman. Also present was Petronas President and Group CEO Datuk Wan Zulkiflee Wan Ariffin.
Khairy said the Petronas contribution was most eagerly awaited by KL2017 because it was symbolic of the strong support of the Malaysian corporate sector which stood by the government in the efforts to organise great and unique sports events.

“Petronas is an example of a company that is not only concerned with its business operations but also gives attention to community outreach efforts through sports. The company is highly respected globally as it has a glorious reputation as a sponsor of various sports events,” he said.

Khairy said the Petronas contribution had taken the total sponsorship for the two games to RM71 million.

Commenting on the planning for KL2017, Khairy said the KL2017 promotion and preparation of venues under the three main clusters concept to facilitate the attendance of fans were proceeding smoothly and steadily. The three main clusters were KL Sports City at Bukit Jalil, Malaysia International Trade and Exhibition Centre in Jalan Duta and Kuala Lumpur Convention Centre, he said.

The SEA Games will take place from Aug 19 to 30 and the ASEAN Para Games, from Sept 17 to 23. – BERNAMA

KOTA BHARU – The move by the Football Association of Malaysia (FAM) to call on the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) to monitor all players, referees and officers involved in the Malaysia League has been described as a timely and proactive step to eradicate corruption.

Youth and Sports Minister Khairy Jamaluddin described FAM president Tunku Ismail Sultan Ibrahim’s move to hand over a list of names for monitoring by MACC as a step in the right direction.

“We see FAM taking proactive measures in that it did not wait for investigations but took the initiative to send the list of people under observation to facilitate MACC’s initial investigations,” he told reporters after presenting prizes to winners of the Kelantan International Half Marathon 2017 at the Rural Transformation Centre (RTC) here today.

Khairy was commenting on press reports on the move by Tunku Ismail to get MACC to monitor players, referees and officers involved in the Malaysia League when the issue of match fixing reared its ugly head to tarnish the image of football in the country.

Tunku Ismail also handed over a list of names and personal details of players, referees and officers to the MACC.

In efforts to ensure corruption did not spread to other sports associations, Khairy said the ministry had sent a clear signal to all sports association that no one would be spared if they were found to be linked to corruption.

“Recently, we held a programme with MACC through the Sports Commissioner’s Office and took a pledge to be corruption-free.” he added.

Meanwhile, Khairy said the Kelantan International Half Marathon (KIHM) which was held for the first time in the state would be made into an annual event in Kelantan.

He said the organising of the sports event was in line with the efforts of the ministry to promote a healthy lifestyle and a love for sports among the people in this state.

KIHM which offered an overall prize of RM80,000, attracted about 8,000 local and foreign runners .

The race was flagged off by International Trade and Industry Minister Datuk Seri Mustapa Mohamed.- BERNAMA

PUTRAJAYA – Adequate high-income job opportunities and quality of life on par with the developed countries are the popular aspirations among youth during the first phase of the National Transformation 2050 (TN50) Dialogue.

Youth and Sports Minister Khairy Jamaluddin said that the aspirations were among the 26,000 (aspirations) collected from 585,000 youth engaged through various channels so far, and that he was confident that the target to involve 1.5 million youth by the end of this year would be achieved.

He said 80 per cent of TN50 aspirations expressed by youth touched on the direction of Malaysia’s economy and employment, education and skills empowerment, values in society, environment, people’s well being and good governance.

“The youth want to see a country with advanced, sustainable, and high-tech economic structure, besides having a drastic increase of income in the next 30 years, flexible workplace and working hours, as flexible working arrangement is necessary for them to generate side income as entrepreneurs.

“Clearly, young Malaysians want Malaysia to build our own technology instead of using the foreign-invented ones, and they are concerned about it (technology) will replace human labour and manpower,” he said this in a press conference on the First 90 Days of TN50 Dialogue in his office here today.

In addition, issues such as environment, well being, developed and integrated transport system, both in rural areas and between the states, green technologies and sustainable development were also raised during the dialogues, he said.

Khairy added that in the educational aspirations, the youth wanted effective education system to prepare everyone to cope with market demands and life pressures as well as changes in technology and the implementation of minimum cost of education from preschool up to higher levels

“Most of the youth want to see governance that is transparent and of high integrity apart from maintaining the Malaysian identity and that all must respect different cultures, religious and languages.

However, Khairy explained the two least discussed topics were of health and retirement but he had pushed and encouraged them to talk about this two important (issues) during TN50 dialogues that had entered the second phase, and would continue until the end of this year.

“We will also establish TN50 Future Groups with each group will comprise 10 youth members and three experts who will examine all issues related to the main topics closely,” he said.

Khairy added that, from today until May 12, youth were invited to participate or to nominate credible individuals to be youth member of TN50 Future Group and applications were also opened to individuals over 40 years old who wanted to contribute as experts for TN50 Future Group via www.mytn50.com/circles/registration. – BERNAMA

KUALA LUMPUR – Young Malaysians prefer citizens of the country to be known as ‘Bangsa Malaysia’ in the next 30 years, Youth and Sports Minister Khairy Jamaluddin said today.

He said the inputs obtained from more than 20 series of dialogues on the 2050 National Transformation (TN50) that had been held nationwide also revealed that the young Malaysians wanted the “wall’ that separated the races in the country to be demolished.

“They want to see an identity that is more united, which is an identity known as ‘Bangsa Malaysia’ to be more prominent than that of the race or ethnic,” he said at the TN50 Dialogue at the Tunku Abdul Rahman University College here today.

Also present were Transport Minister Datuk Seri Liow Tiong Lai, who is also chairman of Tunku Abdul Rahman University College’s Board of Governors.

Khairy said the young people also wanted to see tolerance and respect for one another among Malaysians, as well as for the people to appreciate the difference between the various races.

He said today’s dialogue was held to obtain inputs, including views, of the young people from the Chinese community so that the aspiration of Malaysians from all races would be taken into account in TN50.

TN50, mooted by Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak, is a futuristic policy to map the direction of the country in the next 30 years after 2020. – BERNAMA