Monday, July 17, 2006

The RM 490 Million Brickendonbury Sports Centre Boleh ? UK Councillors Say Tak Boleh !

UPDATED: The latest twist to this piece of news. He is in London already to kau-tim already. From Bernama:

Sports Training Centre Only Approved In Principle

LONDON, July 17 (Bernama) -- The proposed high- performance sports training centre here had only been agreed in principle and the details including the budget have not been approved yet, said Deputy Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak.

He said the Cabinet Committee on sports which he heads had never authorised a budget of RM490 million and he was surprised how the figure appeared in media reports.

"We agreed in principle only. The details of its scope, budget have not been approved yet.

"The Cabinet Committee did not approve RM490 million. It is up to the ministry (of Youth and Sports) to propose a sum for consideration by the government," he told Malaysian journalists covering his week-long visit to the United Kingdom.

He is here to attend the Farnborough International Airshow 2006 and hold meetings with several British ministers.

Najib said he did not expect the cost of the project to reach RM490 million.

Youth and Sports Minister Datuk Azalina Othman Said recently announced that the Cabinet Committee on sports had agreed to build the centre at Brickendonbury, 24km from the proposed site of the 2012 London Olympic Village.

The sports centre will be located in the grounds of the Tun Abdul Razak Research Centre owned by the Malaysian Rubber Board.

Azalina said on July 11 that 24 Malaysian junior athletes were training at the research centre for competitions in Europe.

She said they comprised 14 squash players and 10 archers, adding that the ministry planned to send badminton players and footballers to train at the centre in future.

Also the latest from theSun: "Mati-mati pun mau kasi bina!"

Oh, this 'approval of principal' doesn't come cheap. It has already flung RM 1 million with just a snap of finger.

However, theSun has learnt from ministry sources that about RM1 million has been spent on feasibility studies, the bulk going to UK-based surveyors and consultants.

A media junket on taxpayers money is also being planned.

As a citizen, you just couldn't feel any more pariah than this situation!

***

Malaysia Boleh? Yeah, literally in our own land, not in the UK!

The latest development of the RM 490 Million TARRC Sports Centre in Brickendonbury, England from theSun:



Hold on, sport!
U.K. COUNCILLORS AGAINST MOVE FOR PROPOSED CENTRE OF EXCELLENCE
by R. Nadeswaran and Terence Fernandez


PETALING JAYA: No application has been made to extend or convert the land use of the Tun Abdul Razak Research Centre in Brickendonbury, London, to include a sports facility ­ and even if there was, the local council would reject them.
Nicholas Wilson, a councillor and former mayor for East Hertford said the land is deemed for research and development, thus "it would be very hard to change the use of the centre".

His comments come following controversy over the proposal to use the site as a High Performance Training Centre ­ a forward base for Malaysian athletes competing in Europe.

In an e-mail reply, Wilson said: "We have enough sports activity centres within the locality and to add yet another would be in my opinion, overkill." He also said the centre is situated on a green belt which means that it cannot be destroyed by over-development. "It would be a very risky monetary venture," he stressed.

In 1995, an application to build shower facilities next to the centre's laboratories were allowed subject to strict conditions. In 2004, permission to convert an unused greenhouse into a store was also approved with conditions.

Another councillor Anthony Jackson said he is hearing about this for the first time, adding "Any formal planning application will be dealt with in a way that has appropriate regard for planning legislation and practice."

Last Friday, National Sports Council director-general Datuk Dr Ramlan Abdul Aziz said the centre's 17.6ha site was sold to the Malaysian government in 1971. "We appreciate and respect the local laws and will submit our applications based on those requirements," he said, adding that if all goes according to plan, the centre should be ready in two years.

He also said local residents will be able to use the facilities, but judging from councillor Wilson's stand, the people of East Hertford have more than enough sports centres at their disposal.

Should I shout 'Oh, No!' or 'Padan muka!'?

A search by Google Maps revealed another sports recreation centre, very near to the proposed centre. Guess what it is?


BUSTED: You don't have to be a rocket scientist to know that the proposed centre would be a base for ministers to play golf rather than the 'acclamatisation' of our athletes!

Don't believe me? Just visit the MASDUKE website and tell me how frequent those ministers and pegawai-pegawai visit the UK. You can imagine how a normal Joe Public like me would need to make ends meet to afford a flight back home whereas these people fly here and there AND have open houses like nobody's business under tax-payers' fund!

After Perth, UK- Your Favourite Destination for Escapism...



I just came back from travelling in one of those double-decker buses here. No need more, if only 10% of the amount is used to purchase these buses for Penang, wouldn't our lives be better?

Instead of this...



...why not have this?



And here's the trajectory puking-inducing quote:

With so much uncertainly, it made sense for the Government to take a step back and do the right thing. Running the government is not about scoring points or engaging in brinkmanship. It is about weighing the pros and cons and reaching a decision that is good for Malaysia.



Read also:

Brickendonbury R&D centre invaluable by Tan Sri Dr BC Sekhar, who worked there before. (also reported in today's theSun)

Do You Know Malaysia Owns A Piece of Land in Brickendonbury, England?

Flip-Flop Joget 1: From Rubber To Sports (And It's Not About Sex)

No comments: