Time to recognise classy bodybuilders

Former Mr Asia Bujang Taha is one of such deserving athletes

HAPPY TO BE TOGETHER: Junaidi (left) joins the ‘Tarian Sepatung’, an event held during the Sukaneka in Sejingkat Village here, yesterday.

KUCHING: Parliament Deputy Speaker Datuk Wan Junaidi Tuanku Jaafar voiced out his disappointment towards certain government quarters for not recognising the efforts and contributions by certain bodybuilders.

According to him, there were many bodybuilding athletes here had become world-class champions that indirectly had brought Malaysia’s name in the sports world.

Nevertheless, most of these athletes whom had achieved certain world-class glories in the past are now living below average, without the help from the government in lightening up their burden.

One example he said, former bodybuilding champion, Sarawak’s very own Bujang Taha who had once glorified Malaysia’s name in the international sports world is now living a below average livelihood among today’s society.

Recalling back his past glories, Bujang’s best achievement was during SEA Games in 1977/1979 where he brought back two gold medals for the country in Bantam Weight category.

Adding to his contributions, Bujang had also been crowned as Mr. Asia in 1980, 1982, 1983, 1986. He was once selected to represent the country for the Mr. Universe in 1982.

Besides that, he had been chosen as athlete of the year twice in 1981 and 1989.

“I am very proud with our current world squash champion Datuk Nicole David. But at the same time I am very sad looking at our former world class bodybuilding champion, Bujang Taha who is now living a below average life, struggling to make a living for himself.

“This is a very sad case to hear and it is such an embarrassment in the eyes of the world to see our world class athlete who is not well taken care of by the government and other welfare bodies or centres,” he said.

Wan Junaidi who is also Santubung MP was interviewed during the official ceremony of Sukaneka, organised by Women’s PBB and Women’s PPWS, at Sejingkat Village here, yesterday.

Meanwhile, he said all athletes including bodybuilders in other countries are very well recognised by their government and mostly have become role models in today’s society and are able to have their own personal career.

“With this, I plead to the government to recognise, treasure and appreciate to all contributions done by our bodybuilding athletes who had once brought glory to this     country and to the world,” he said.

During the Sukaneka, Wan Junaidi encouraged more Sukaneka events to be organised in the future.

Wan Junaidi, also Santubong MP said communities could get together and foster closer bond through such event.

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