KUALA LUMPUR: The Malaysian Amateur Athletic Union (MAAU) have slammed vice-president K. Yogeswaran’s resignation as nothing more than an election charade.
“He did not resign because of his concerns over the sad state of affairs in the MAAU but because the association’s election is on Jan 29,” said MAAU deputy president Karim Ibrahim yesterday.
“Why didn’t he quit a year ago if he wasn’t pleased with the affairs of the association? Why resign just before the elections?”
The deadline for nomination for the posts of MAAU president, two vice-presidents and two executive board members is noon on Jan 20.
Yogeswaran, a former national runner, resigned in the wake of the bold move by eight disgruntled athletes in airing their grievances about the sad state of affairs in athletics to Youth and Sports Minister Datuk Seri Ahmad Shabery Cheek on Monday.
The athletes were unhappy with MAAU’s plans to shift their training programme from Bukit Jalil to Ranau in Sabah in preparation for the SEA Games in November. The move is expected to cost MAAU RM3mil.
Yogeswaran, who is also the chairman of the competitions committee, had also claimed that he had had enough of MAAU’s ad hoc decisions and lack of planning.
Meanwhile, Karim said that their plan to shift the training base to Ranau was on track.
“We expect to start the first phase of training by next month. We are not forcing the athletes who are studying in universities in the Klang Valley to train there,” said Karim.
“How is it that these athletes, who are studying in universities, can go for overseas stints but not train in Ranau for three months?”
He revealed that three athletes – Mohd Jironi Riduan, J. Karthik and S. Sivamanogaran – would begin training in Ranau by end of this month in preparation for the Asian cross-country in Kathmandu, Nepal, on Feb 20. The coach is former national long-distance runner M. Ramachandran.