JOHOR BARU, Feb 5 — The Johor government has postponed its Semarak Juara Carnival 2020 held to promote the coming Malaysian Games (Sukma) due to the current 2019-nCoV coronavirus outbreak that has seen several home cases in Malaysia and neighbouring Singapore and Thailand.

Johor Youth, Sports, Culture and Heritage Committee chairman Mohd Khuzzan Abu Bakar said the decision took into consideration the state’s close proximity with Singapore across the Causeway.

He said the postponement was made to safeguard the public’s health.

“However, we will review the on holding the carnival’s programme by the end of February,” said Mohd Khuzzan in a press conference on the Semarak Juara Carnival 2020 at the Thistle Hotel Johor Baru here today.

The carnival is a prelude to Sukma in July and was supposed to be held between February 13-15 at Dataran Bandaraya here.

Mohd Khuzzan, who is also the Semerah assemblyman, said Johor is still continuing preparations to host Sukma. The state last hosted the games in 1992.

“Our planning and preparation are already in place and we are upbeat that this year’s Sukma will be the best in the game’s 20-year history.

“At present, we have a total of 18 venues hosting 31 sporting events for Sukma, where the construction is about 90 per cent complete and is on schedule to be completed by end of April,” explained Mohd Khuzzan.