2026 Commonwealth Games: Govt’s decision will prioritise country's interest - Hannah

KBS will not waste taxpayers' money even if it is prepared to organise it.

21 Mar 2024 01:49pm
Hannah Yeoh. Bernama FILE PIX
Hannah Yeoh. Bernama FILE PIX

KUALA LUMPUR - Youth and Sports Minister Hannah Yeoh expressed confidence that any decision to be taken by the Cabinet regarding hosting the 2026 Commonwealth Games will prioritise the country’s interest.

She said the matter would be discussed thoroughly at the cabinet meeting scheduled tomorrow.

"So far, the federal government’s stand on the matter is not known but what is certain is that the Youth and Sports Ministry (KBS) always puts the interests of the people as its number one priority and will not at all waste taxpayers' money even if it is prepared to organise it.

"We will make sure that a conservative approach is taken every time it involves the people's money. If the government agrees to host it, KBS suggests that the amount to be spent does not exceed the grant given by the CGF (Commonwealth Games Federation)," she said during the Minister's Question Time in the Dewan Rakyat today.

She was responding to a question from Afnan Hamimi Taib Azamudden (PN-Alor Setar) regarding the matter following Australia’s withdrawal from hosting the game.

The CGF has offered Malaysia to host the Games, while also offering a 100 million pound (RM603 million) fund to Malaysia, which had hosted in 1998.

Australia withdrew from hosting the Games due to an increase in the organising costs, from the initial expectation of AUD2.6 billion (about RM8.09 billion) to AUD7 billion (about RM21.78 billion).

According to Hannah, should the government opt to host the 2026 Commonwealth Games, KBS would appoint a body to audit the organising account.

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"The most important thing is to ensure proper governance, transparent financial management, all costs and expenses are properly recorded," she said. - BERNAMA