KUALA LUMPUR, April 29 (Bernama) -- The Ministry of Youth and Sports will set aside RM300,000 to refurbish the Kedah state aquatic centre in Gunung Keriang as a contingency plan for the SUKMA that will be hosted by Perlis.
The contingency plan taken to avoid any probabilities if the aquatic centre in Kangar, Perlis cannot be completed according to schedule said Youth and Sports Minister Khairy Jamaluddin.
"I have to make sure everything is ready for the SUKMA in Perlis. The Ministry has already released the allocation to refurbish the swimming complex in Kedah.
"However, I hope the aquatic centre and the badminton complex in Perlis can be completed in time for the SUKMA," he told reporters after launching the 'Malaysia Purple League' (MPL) a professional badminton league, at the Sentosa Sports Arena, here today.
According to reports, the aquatic centre in Perlis which was supposed to have been completed by March 31, was only 70 percent ready although Perlis Mentri Besar Azlan Man had assured that all venues would be ready before the SUKMA starts on May 24.
Khairy had also announced that the Ministry had allocated RM122 million to Perlis to host the SUKMA from May 24 to June 4.
The SUKMA in Perlis will feature 24 sports and offer 356 gold medals.
Meanwhile, the Malaysia Purple League, a professional badminton league will see participation from various clubs in the country and feature professional and amateur players.
According to Khairy the league would help unearth talented young shuttlers who can one day replace players like Datuk Lee Chong Wei.
"The league will be platform to unearth raw talent. If the raw talent is unearthed at the age of 10, the talent can be groomed to take over from Chong Wei after 10 years," he said.
For a start, the MPL will feature 12 clubs that will vie for the RM2 million overall prize money offered.