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10 APRIL 2024

Tuesday, August 30, 2016

Ridhuan rapped for ‘unpatriotic sportsmen’ remarks

MCA accuses controversial academician of intention to destroy harmony and unity of Malaysians.
PETALING JAYA: Controversial academician Ridhuan Tee Abdullah has come under fire for saying Malaysian Olympic medal winners are unpatriotic and only competing in sports for monetary rewards.
MCA Youth Secretary-General Leong Kim Soon said the article penned by Tee could destroy the harmony and unity of Malaysians.
“Not only is he an utmost unpatriotic person, his personal subjective and narrow-minded thinking poses a problem,” said Leong.
In his column in a Malay language daily published on Monday, Tee said sports had become a business and also a means to gain popularity.
He said it was no longer for patriotism, but only for show.
He wrote that “ultra-kiasu” (mercenary) athletes competed for monetary rewards rather than for patriotic reasons and thus were driven towards individual sports, rather than sports which required teamwork.
Ridhuan, a Universiti Sultan Zainal Abidin (UniSZA) lecturer, also urged for more diversity among Malaysian athletes.
In response, Leong said sports transcended race and religion.
“Malaysia’s badminton exponents, who coincidentally are ethnic Chinese, united all Malaysians, irrespective of race and religion, during their semi-final and final matches at the Rio Olympics.
“Malaysians were kept glued to their television sets, cheering for our sportsmen and sportswomen. They fully embodied the spirit of solidarity when our badminton players were presented with the precious medals,” said Leong.
The athletes’ passion, skills and hard work were dismissed by Tee, said Leong.
“He not only belittled the efforts and hard work of our Olympians, he also insulted everyone across the nation,” said Leong.
“It is wrong of Ridhuan Tee to single out the rewards to be presented to Datuk Lee Chong Wei when the government had announced that it would award each medallist with an additional RM200,000 bonus on top of the existing incentive under the sports scheme,” said Leong.
Leong pointed out that the bonus will also be given to other Olympic medallists, including badminton mixed doubles pair Chan Peng Soon and Goh Liu Ying (silver); men’s doubles pair Goh V Shem and Tan Wee Kiong (silver), divers Pendelela Rinong and Cheong Jun Hoong (silver), and cyclist Azizulhasni Awang (bronze).
He also noted that the Malaysian Government would be rewarding paralympians, who win a gold medal, with RM1 million – a reward which equals that of able-bodied Olympic athletes.

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