Klang City International Marathon Discovered to Be Held Illegally After Serious Car Crash
Minister calls for heavier fine and imprisonment term for organisers who fails to abide the law.
The Malaysian Sports Commissioner's Office (PPS) will take legal action against the organisers of the Klang City International Marathon 2017 for failing to obtain the licence to organise the marathon after a car crash that leave three runners injured.
At around 4.30 a.m. around Jalan Kapar Batu 2 on the race day (10 December) at the 14km mark, a car from Klang heading to Kapar, had hit the participants from behind. Three victims were injured during the crash.
One of the victims is the marathon pacer Evelyn Ang Gek Suan, 44, who suffered severe head injuries and bleeding in the brain in the crash and underwent surgery in Hospital Sungai Buloh and is currently in the ICU.
The other two victims, Amiruddin Hamid, 37, and Ahmad Hadafi Jus, 42, suffered head and ankle injuries which were not as severe as Ang's. Amiruddin is still admitted in Hospital Klang for treatment, while Ahmad Hadafi received outpatient treatment.
A 27-year-old Proton Iswara driver was arrested after the incident, had been cleared of drunk driving and drug consumption after testing negative on a urine test. The driver was not injured.
North Klang OCPD Asst Comm Mazelan Paijan said police are investigating the case for reckless driving.
After the incident, Sports Commissioner Datuk Zaiton Othman said their office had not received any requests from the event organisers for a licence for the event.
She said in a statement,
The run was held without the permission of the Sports Commissioner which acts as the gatekeeper for any events held within the country. We will take legal action against the event organisers under the Act.
Ms Zaiton referred to the Sports Development Act 1997, Section 36 which states that no company can be involved in organising any sporting activity or any other activity related to sports in accordance to the regulations set by the minister, unless licensed by the commissioner.
The statement also indicated that it is compulsory for organisers to ensure they are capable of hosting the event financially and technically, as well as to abide by every method, and rules and regulations outlined in the national and international sports management body rulebook.
Race organiser Donny Teh (staff from the sales and marketing department) said Earth Runners International Group Sdn Bhd had sent the relevant applications for the run to traffic police and to the municipal council in May. Mr Teh said that 65 police officers, 40 Rela personnel, 35 road marshals and five ambulances were at the event.
Minister for Youth and Sports, Khairy Jamaluddin said the ministry will blacklist the organisers, Earth Runners Int Group Sdn Bhd, for failure to submit an application to hold the event and all events sanctioned by PPS would be posted onto the ministry’s website starting 12 December.
He said an amendment to the Section 36 of the Sports Development Act 1997 will be submitted for review to the Attorney General’s Chamber to impose a heavier fine of RM500,000 and to extend the imprisonment term, as well as to make it compulsory for organisers to apply for a license 90 days prior to the event date.
The existing Act imposes a fine not more than RM5,000, imprisonment not more than six months or both upon conviction.
Update, 27 February 2018: On 20 Feb 2018, the 27-year-old driver, Teoh Thiam Lim, was charged in the Klang magistrate's court for reckless driving stemming from this incident when he allegedly ran over Ang and two others at the marathon. He pleaded not guilty in the Klang magistrate's court.
The 44-year-old Evelyn Ang has undergone 11 surgeries after suffering from a cranial fracture and bleeding in the brain, and has not regained consciousness since.
The Attorney-General's Chambers has declared an NFA (No Further Action) on the investigation papers (IP) into the failure of Klang City International Marathon organiser to obtain a licence or apply for one from the Sports Commissioner to hold the event last December, with the reason being that Section 36(1) of the Sports Development Act 1997 was not an accusable offence.
Section 36(1) of the Sports Development Act reads: “A company shall not involve itself in any sporting activity or in any other activity related to sports, as may be prescribed by the Minister in the regulations, unless it is licensed to do so by the Commissioner.”
Update, 1 March 2018: Ultramarathon runner Evelyn Ang died early this morning around 1.30am, according to her husband, Dennis Loo. She was in a coma after she was knocked down in a hit-and-run last December.
Featured Photo Credit: ROYAL MALAYSIAN POLICE. The wrecked car that hits Pacer Evelyn Ang (left) and two other runners during Klang City International Marathon 2017 in Klang on 10 December, 2017.