PETALING JAYA, Sept 20 — The National Sports Council (NSC) is “gravely concerned” over drug abuse by Malaysia Games (Sukma) athletes.
After, double gold medallist and this year’s Sukma sportswoman Jelinie Empera — who was tested positive for anabolic steroids — the NSC has revealed two more names.
Federal Territories cyclist Dhia Danial Kharil and Perlis weightlifter Siti Fazera Ishak were not medal winners at the Games in May, but had traces of banned substances in their urine samples.
NSC sports management director Datuk Abdul Jalil Abdullah acknowledged there was a need to initiate a concerted effort to educate the young athletes against using performance-enhancing drugs.
He said drug abuse will ruin their sporting career.
NSC is part of the organising secretariat of the Games.
“There are rules and everyone must adhere to them. The Malaysia Anti-Doping Agency (Adamas), National Sports Institute (NSI) and NSC, need to further educate the athletes,” said Abdul Jalil who also heads the Sukma secretariat.
“This is a serious matter and it’s sad that our future athletes are involved. Sukma is for the development of these athletes but it’s tainted with these findings.”
He said NSC will strip Jelinie’s two gold medals in the snatch as well as clean and jerk events. “The rest is up to the respective associations to take the necessary action.”
Abdul Jalil believes other parties could be involved in providing the athletes with the banned substances. He hopes the respective national association would identify the culprits.
Malay Mail had, in its front page report “From winner to sinner” yesterday, revealed Jelinie tested positive for a banned drug. The Malaysia Weightlifting Federation pledged to take stern action against athletes and officials guilty of abusing drugs.
The Sarawak Sports Council managed to contact Jelinie, who was working with her father in a timber camp in a remote place in Ulu Baram, Miri.
She is expected to return in a week and explain her “unsporting behaviour”. It is learnt she had taken a health supplement for her menstrual cycle.
Jelinie lifted 85kg to break the earlier record set by Johorean Tey Shan Fung (84kg, set in 2010) in the women’s snatch event. She then carried 107kg in the clean and jerk event, one kg more than Tey’s effort in 2010 to secure her second gold medal.
She was named Sportswoman of the 17th Sukma in Perlis and received her award from Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak at the Tuanku Syed Putra Stadium at the closing ceremony on June 4.
Sukma features athletes aged 21 and below and is seen as a stepping stone to international outings.
More than 400 athletes were randomly selected to undergo testing during the Games. Their urine samples were sent to the National Dope Testing Laboratory in New Delhi, India.
The results received indicated Dhia and Jelinie had traces of anabolic steroids while Siti Fazera’s sample contained diuretics, often used as a masking agent.
Though diuretics is also used for weight loss, the World Anti-Doping Agency (Wada) banned it because athletes could use it to conceal other banned substances that they had taken.