Thursday, 15 May 2014

Bernama : Perlis rushing to complete aquatic centre for SUKMA

KANGAR, May 15: With only 10 days before the Sukma begins, the availability of the aquatic centre remains uncertain.

And the refusal of Perlis Menteri Besar Azlan Man to answer questions posed by journalists today regarding the centre meant to be the venue for the swimming and diving competitions has kept everyone in the dark.

Azlan had earlier assured that the centre and the indoor badminton hall would be handed over to the state government by the contractor today.

But today he had this to say: "I did not say both the venues will be handed over today. I have been monitoring the progress and visiting the site three or four times a day to ensure it is completed."

Azlan was met near the Arau double-tracking area which is a flood prone area.

He had earlier assured that the aquatic centre would be ready by May 15 so that it can be used as intended, instead of having swimming and diving held at the Gunung Keriang aquatic complex across the border in Kedah.

Youth and Sports Minister Khairy Jamaluddin, after visiting the Sukma venues on Monday, said that Gunung Keriang would be the alternative venue.

A visit to the site by journalists together with Minister in the Prime Minister's Department Datuk Seri Shahidan Kassim today revealed that the swimming pool was ready but not the diving pool. The latter would take between seven and 10 days to be completed.

"The contractor and consultant assured that the venue can be ready in five to seven days, about two days before the start of Sukma. My only worry is will parents allow their children to compete at a venue that has been completed in a rush and without the safety tested?

"The consultant and contractor have given the assurance that safety will be given priority. Although swimming start only on May 28, the place needs first to be certified," said Shahidan.

The indoor badminton stadium however has been completed and ready to host the Sukma to be held from May 24 to June 4.

Khairy on top of one of the diving boards during a site visit a few days ago. By May 15 the swimming pool is reported to be ready but not the diving pool.

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