KUALA LUMPUR: Be prepared for the traffic jams in the 23rd edition of the SEA Games in the Philippines.
With eight districts hosting 41 events, the Olympic Council of Malaysia (OCM) president, Tunku Tan Sri Imran Tuanku Jaafar, expects overcoming traffic problems to be an organisational challenge for the hosts.
“It is going to be a challenge for the organisers to bring the athletes to their respective venues. I was there earlier this year and the traffic jams in Manila are worse than what you see here,” he said.
“Our athletes should take an effort to make sure they allocate time to get to their competition early.”
Chef-de-mission Low Beng Choo said that it would also be a challenge for the media covering the Games.
“Some of the main events are quite a distance from Manila. For example, swimming will not take place near the main complex but outside Manila. The distance is about that from Kuala Lumpur to Seremban,” she said.
“There are some events in Cebu and Bacolod. One has to go there by flight, which takes about two-and-a-half hours from Manila. The media will have to do proper planning too.”
On the final list of Malaysian athletes for the Games, the OCM are just waiting for four sports to make their final selection.
Athletics and gymnastics will name their teams after their national championships at the end of the month. Shooting is expected to do so after the South-East Asia Championships, which will be held at the Subang Range in Petaling Jaya from Sept 20-26.
Taekwondo, which will compete under the OCM banner following the deregistration of their national association, has also yet to finalise their team.
The deadline for submission of athletes by name is Sept 27.
The Malaysian athletes will again get strong support from the Samsung Famemas Supporters Group. More than 50 members, including 30 Samsung customers and former national athletes, will cheer the Malaysian athletes in competitions at the nine-day biennial Games, beginning on Nov 27.
The 30 Samsung customers will be selected from the “Your Victory, Our Glory” contest, which runs from Sept 8-Oct 20. Details of the campaign are available on the Famemas website – www.famemas.org.