ASAS disappointed S’wak lost right to host World Para Swimming Championships


Anthony Kong

KUCHING: Amateur Swimming Association of Sarawak (ASAS) secretary Anthony Kong expressed his disappointment over the cancellation of the 2019 World Para Swimming Championships which was scheduled to be held here from July 29 until Aug 4.

This is so when the International Paralympic Committee (IPC) in London yesterday decided to take away the hosting right of Kuching, Sarawak for the tournament.

As of yesterday (Jan 26), 64 countries has confirmed their participation involving 1,678 athletes and officials.

The decision to bar entry of Isrealis was a national foreign policy of Malaysia which Sarawak as a State within Malaysia has to respect.

“I am very sad, hugely disappointed and despair that we Sarawak lost the rights to host this prestigious meet,” said Kong.

Kong described the tournament as an eye opener and a platform to show to the world that Sarawak can host another major world event besides badminton.

“We need it desperately to prove our Sarawakians’ ‘Agi Idup Agi Ngelaban’ (Never Give Up) capabilities. As for IPC’s decision, my big heart goes to Sarawak but my head tells me also they are right,” said Kong.

Nevertheless ASAS has to play by the rule by respecting the government’s policy of not having diplomatic relationship with Isreal.

“It is what it is. Rules, regulations, constitutions and governing bodies of all sports have their own guidelines which are there to protect their own bona fide athletes and upheld their own respective sport in the highest esteem irrespective or race, colour, religion and origins.

“Unfortunately, at times they contradict and at loggerhead with one’s country politic and policy.”

“We must remember any particular sport their own rules, regulations and constitutions will reign supreme and at time they contradict with politics and they may be above politic and policy of one’s country.

”The saying of politics don’t mix well with sports could be more of a case exactly ‘politics don’t interfere with sports’,” he said.