KUCHING: Sarawak has set a target of scoring 60 gold medals at the Malaysia Para Games (Para SUKMA) 2022 which will take place in Kuala Lumpur in October.
Of these, Women, Childhood and Community Wellbeing Development Minister Datuk Seri Fatimah Abdullah said there was a target of 26 gold medals for Para Athletics, Para Swimming (18), Para Powerlifting (7), Para 10-Pin Bowling (4), Para Ping Pong (2), Para Badminton (1), Para Lawn Bowls (1), and Para Chess (1).
“Let’s not forget our mission – nothing less than being the champion,” she said during her session with Para SUKMA 2022 athletes at Imperial Hotel here today.
She said if Sarawak were to emerge as champion of the approaching Para SUKMA 2022, this would be the 14th time.
She also said the contingent to Kuala Lumpur for Para SUKMA 2022 would include 300 people, comprising personnel from the ministry, Youth and Sports Department, chef de mission, team manager, coaches, assistant coaches, medical team, parents, and so on.
“We will make a very impressive team. We want to be an impressive team not only in terms of appearance but also in terms of performance,” she said.
Meanwhile, Matthew Chin, head of the OKU development unit under the Women, Childhood and Community Wellbeing Development Ministry, said that of the 300 people in Sarawak’s contingent to Para SUKMA 2022, 180 would be athletes and 120 would be collectively from the technical team, medical team, and secretariat.
Fatimah said after Para SUKMA 2022, they would also look forward to more events at the international level.
“We want our athletes with disabilities (OKU athletes) to uplift the name of Sarawak and Malaysia at the international level.
“History has shown that it is possible. We can become champions not only at the national level but also at the global level,” she said.
She said empowering OKU through sports was beneficial in terms of health, raising self-esteem, boosting self-confidence, and also being a career – as long as one was fully committed to it.
She pointed out that Sarawak had several examples of OKU athletes who had successfully made sports their career.
“When I am with the OKU athletes, I can feel their high commitment to make Sarawak famous. They want to win because they want people to know about Sarawak.
“It is a very noble aspiration and we appreciate this spirit. Winning for Sarawak also means winning for yourself and for your family,” said Fatimah.