KUCHING: Universiti Malaysia Sarawak (Unimas) is set to become the centre of solidarity and unity for three countries in the Borneo region.
Ministry of Higher Learning Deputy Secretary General (Management) Datuk Omar Abdul Rahman said Unimas is suitable because of its strategic location, facilities and expertise and also its international policy that invites internationals to share their knowledge and experiences.
He also commented that sports was an excellent way to promote unity.
“Sports events are one of the ways to uphold unity and foster ties between neighbouring countries. Through this, we not only share borders but also a common interest for all,” he said.
He said at the opening ceremony of Second Borneo Undergraduates Games (Sukmab) held at Unimas mini stadium Thursday. Omar said, not only Unimas but the rest of the participating universities will have the chance to host the games and other socio-economic conferences and activities.
“By this, all higher learning institutions will have the opportunity to show their prowess and expertise in other areas. This year, Unimas is given the honour to become the centre of unity by organising the Borneo Major Univerisity sports event,” he added.
In 2009, Sukmab was held at Universiti Malaysia Sabah. He pointed out that through university sports, more potential athletes would be produced to represent the country at international events.
“This is in line with the Ministry’s vision to see at least 30 per cent of national athletes are university undergraduates,” he said.
Earlier on, Unimas Deputy Vice Chancellor Assoc Prof Mohd Fadzil Abdul Rahman said Unimas is ready to host two major national university sports events, the Malaysian Inter-Universities Sports Council (Masum) and the Borneo Staff Sports.
Sukmab this year will see a total of 15 teams from several higher learning institutions in Borneo (including Brunei and Indonesia) taking part in the three-day event.
The games will be offering ten sports events.
Among those present during the opening ceremony were Brunei Darussalam Deputy Consulate General Rosmani Metali, Indonesia Consulate General Secretary for Political Affairs and Culture, Gondosoermarto Wibisono and Secretary for Sports Department at the Ministry of Higher Learning Dr Saharudin Ismail.