PETALING JAYA, July 16 — Sports Ministry insisted the decision to postpone the Standard Chartered KL Marathon (SCKLM) by six days so it runs concurrently with National Sports Day (NSD) was a joint agreement.
Khairy also revealed the ministry and organiser Dirigo Events Sdn Bhd were in talks to hold SCKLM together with NSD much earlier but it did not take off.
“There were some initial discussions but you know ... may be a lack of communication,” said Khairy.
“We — the ministry, Dirigo and title sponsors Standard Chartered — reached a joint decision to align the marathon with NSD.
“Runners are concerned and we take that seriously. Give us some time. We’re actively discussing with organisers to get the exact nature of their concerns.”
The postponement has caused a stir among runners as they were planning to compete in other runs on October 10. International and outstation runners especially, could face difficulties in changing travel and accommodation arrangements.
When asked if there were plans to reimburse those affected, Khairy said: “We’re not there yet. But it’s important we look into specifics like flight booking and hotels.”
Khairy dismissed suggestions having several runs on NSD could lower participation as enthusiasts will have to skip one or the other.
“We felt it would be nice to have as many events as possible on NSD. It won’t affect participation. Previously, all races are sold out quickly.
“There is always more demand for space in these runs. So we’re confident, despite many events, that Malaysians are keen enough to participate,” he added.