KUALA LUMPUR: The Olympic Council of Malaysia (OCM) will stick with its plan to organise the 2015 Malaysia International Marathon on May 23 and 24 at the Batu Kawan Stadium in Penang even without it being sanctioned by the Malaysian Athletics Federation (MAF).
It is understood that the MAF is asking for RM3 million from OCM to be paid to the International Association of Athletics Federations (IAAF) as labour cost to organise the event that is being held for the first time in conjunction with OCM’s 60th Diamond Jubilee Year Celebration.
OCM vice-president Danyal Balagopal Abdullah said they did not need MAF’s consent to organise the event since the Ministry of Youth and Sports, Penang Athletics Association and the Penang state government had given their nod.
“It is better for the money to be given to our NSAs. There is no need for us to go and see MAF to clarify this issue. I have also met Penang Chief Minister (Lim Guan Eng) who also gave the nod,” he told reporters after launching the event here today.
Danyal also questioned MAF’s motive for not sanctioning the event which was aimed at raising funds for all National Sports Associations (NSAs) in the country.
“We do not want to play politics as what we want is to help raise funds to help NSAs which are in dire need of funds to execute their programmes.
“I have done a lot of work with the NSAs during the workshop and they are genuinely coming to give their feedback, including strategic plans as what the Youth and Sports Minister (Khairy Jamaluddin) wants,” he added.
Danyal said there would be five categories in the event, namely a full marathon (42km for men and women); half marathon (21km); 10km (junior, men and women); fun run (5km) and also Novelty Category (wheelchair/persons with disability)-3km).
“Our target is 30,000 participants but we expect that number to reach up to 40,000 since it will be held for the first time,” he said.
The 2015 MIM will start at the Batu Kawan Stadium before crossing the newly-built Sultan Abdul Halim Muadzam Shah bridge and back to the Batu Kawan Stadium.
Participants can submit their entries in the event that offers RM350,000 as prize money from January 15 onwards and the closing date is March 31. They can register via the event website; www.ocmmim.com