Media Statement by Dr. Ong Kian Ming, MP for Serdang, on the 13th of July, 2015
I was shocked when I read the news release by the Ministry of Youth and Sports earlier today to announce that the flagship marathon event in Kuala Lumpur, the Standard Chartered Kuala Lumpur Marathon or SCKL Marathon, has been postponed from Sunday, the 4th of October, 2015, to Saturday the 10th of October, 2015 to coincide with the inaugural National Sports Day. This move on the part of the Ministry of Youth and Sports and the Minister, Khairy Jamaluddin, is totally irresponsible, inconsiderate and defeats the intended purpose of the National Sports Day.
One of the purpose of the National Sports Day is to encourage more Malaysians to exercise and keep fit together. Ironically, the decision to change the date of the SCKL Marathon to the 10th of October will likely decrease the number of people exercising and keeping fit. Here are some reasons for this:
Reason 1: The 10th of October is a Saturday which means that those who have to work on Saturday and who cannot take leave will be forced to miss this marathon.
Reason 2: The 10th of October is a Saturday which means that those who are outstation and who cannot take leave on Friday to travel to KL will be forced to miss this marathon.
Reason 3: Many outstation runners may have bought their flight tickets already and since the SCKL Marathon doesn’t cover refunds for air tickets, runners who don’t want to pay for another ticket will be forced to miss this marathon.
Reason 4: At least 9 other races in Malaysia will be held on the 10th and 11th of October. Instead of being able to participate in two events – the SCKL Marathon and one of the races which will be held on the 10th and 11th of October – runners will be forced to choose between them and only participate in only one race.
Reason 5: Some runners may choose to miss this event because of perceived political interference by the Minister and Ministry of Youth and Sports.
Reason 6: Some runners may choose to miss this event because the experience of running on the roads in KL on a Saturday, with the increased traffic on the roads which are not totally closed, will be less enjoyable compared to running on a Sunday, with the lower amount of traffic.
The Minister may not be aware of this but the date of any international marathon is set well in advance in order and should not be changed to cater 3 months before the event. As of 330pm, a mere 2 hours after the release of the statement by the Ministry of Youth and Sports, the SCKL Marathon facebook has been bombarded with 660 comments which are mostly critical of this decision and many people have tweeted @khairykj and @scklmarathon expressing their dissatisfaction with regard to this decision. I call upon the organizers of SCKL Marathon and the Ministry and Minister of Sports to listen to the voices of the people and restore the SCKL Marathon back to the original date of 4th of October. I also encourage all runners to tweet @scklmarathon and @khairykj with the hashtag #SCKLM4October and to post on their facebook pages messages asking for the SCKL Marathon to be held on the original date of the 4th of October, 2015.
 10Oct 2015(Sat) 21km HRDF Half Marathon Putrajaya
10Oct 2015(Sat) 12km Run Forrest Run Trail, Mardi Maeps Serdang
10Oct 2015 (Sat) 6km+22obstacles Reebok KL Spartan Sprint Race
10Oct 2015(Sat) Kepong Ballbreaker Run,Taman Botani,Shah Alam
10Oct 2015(Sat) 5km Music Run,SIC Sepang
10Oct 2015(Sat) Petzl Trail Nite Run,Taman Rimba Alam,Putrajaya Precinct 15
11Oct 2015 15&10&5km HCP Run,Stadium Arena,UM
11Oct 2015 12km Mahkota Charity Run,Mahkota Medical Centre,Melaka
11Oct 2015 Water Carpark Run,Kuching
 KL car free morning only covers the town center and not all of the roads along the SCKL Marathon route.