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National Sports Council dismisses allegations of RM1.5m in missing funds, says all spent appropriately

Publish date: Thu, 30 Nov 2023, 12:56 PM

KUALA LUMPUR, Nov 30 — The National Sports Council (NSC) has reportedly dismissed recent allegations suggesting the disappearance of funds amounting to RM1.47 million.

English daily New Straits Times quoted the NSC addressing the utilisation of allocations from the National Podium Programme, saying the funds had been appropriately utilised for athletes under the national backup programme.

“The NSC and National Sports Institute, through several meetings with the National Audit Department, have justified that allocations from the National Podium Programme were used for athletes under the national backup programme because it is the same athletes who help prepare the Podium athletes for major sporting events.

“For the payments made for sports science and medical services, the NSC had difficulty separating the recipients by their respective allocations, so it was handed out to all under NSC's programme,” the NSC was quoted as saying in a statement.

It said the Auditor-General's Report 2022 revealed that RM1.26 million had been utilised and approved by the NSC.

Out of those, RM550,000 were disbursed to coaches and athletes under the national backup programme, RM300,000 for equipment and bicycle spare parts related to the national backup programme, RM70,000 for sports science services for national backup athletes and those at the Mokhtar Dahari Academy, and RM340,000 for National Sports Associations between 2019 and 2021.

An additional RM210,000, classified as “expenditure not under the scope,” was approved by the National Sports Institute for National Sports Associations between 2016 and 2018.

NSC said the primary focus of the Podium Programme is to prepare athletes for significant events such as the Sea Games, Para Asean, Commonwealth Games, Asian Games, Asian Para Games, Olympics, and Paralympics.

“Generally, grants will be handed out to NSAs to manage their preparations towards these major sporting events, especially sports not under the NSC programme.

“Among the sports that benefited from this are muay thai, fencing, kickboxing, snooker and billiard. Some of these sports have even contributed medals at the Sea and Asian Games level,” NSC was quoted as saying.

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