Sarawak government expected to reward paralympic duo

Powerlifters Bonnie Bunyau Gustin (left) and Jong Yee Khie were given a modest but meaningful reception upon their arrival at the KL International Airport (KLIA) here today (Aug 31). Photo: Bernama

KUCHING: The Sarawak government is expected to award incentives to two paralympians who won gold and silver at the Tokyo 2020 Paralympics Games.

This was mentioned by Sarawak Youth and Sports Minister Datuk Abdul Karim Rahman Hamzah, who also lauded the achievements of powerlifters Bonnie Bunyau Gustin and Jong Yee Khie.

He also pointed out that the athletes would be rewarded as well under the National Sports Council’s scheme.

“We are very proud that five Sarawakians are among the 22 athletes in the Malaysian contingent for the Tokyo Paralympics.

“Bonnie and Yee Khie have sacrificed a lot to be the best.

“They will be rewarded by the government. I personally think it is best to wait for the announcement from the federal side on what their rewards will be.

“The state government would usually follow suit and make its announcement after. Although the state government does not have a specific (reward) scheme, based on previous experience, the incentives would be half of what is given by the federal government.

“However, this matter will be brought to the Cabinet first before it is announced,” he said on Thursday (Sept 2).

On the state’s part, Abdul Karim said it was up to the Sarawak government and the relevant committee to decide on this.

“Similarly, the matter would be discussed in the Cabinet before it is announced. I believe that the state government will consider awarding the two athletes with a medal for the glory and honour they have brought to the state.

“I personally support this, but at the same time, I do believe that incentives are more important as it will help the athletes for the rest of their lives.”

Abdul Karim also called upon the private sector to provide incentives as a token of appreciation to the athletes who have made Sarawak and Malaysia proud.