COVID-19: Ministry, House agree to postpone 2020 PON in Papua

first_imgThe Youth and Sports Ministry and House Commission X agreed on Tuesday to postpone the National Games (PON), which were initially scheduled to be held from Oct. 20 to Nov. 2 in Papua, as the country is struggling to contain the spread of COVID-19.“Regarding the [new] date, month, year of the PON, the ministry will consult with the President on the matter,” the head of House Commission X overseeing education and sports affairs, Syaiful Huda, said.Syaiful Huda reported that Minister Zainudin Amali had agreed to postpone the sporting event considering the delay in sports equipment procurement and lack of athletes’ preparation as a result of the pandemic. “Some sports equipment manufacturing countries are struggling with the pandemic,” he said.Read also: Olympics postponement gives Indonesian sports stakeholders breathing space“Some equipment must be imported from Europe, China or Japan. It would be impossible for those countries to meet the deadline for PON within five months,” Syaiful said, adding that the auction for the sports equipment should have been done by July of this year.The athletes have also been struggling to prepare for the games as they are faced with movement restrictions imposed to curb the spread of COVID-19, which had infected almost 5,000 people and killed over 400 in Indonesia as of Tuesday. The postponement of the PON comes following the rescheduling of the ASEAN Para Games, which was expected to be held from Oct. 3 to 9 in the Philippines, but has been pushed back to March 21 to 27, 2021 and the Tokyo Olympics which have been postponed to July 23 to Aug. 8, 2021, after initially being scheduled for July 24 to Aug. 9, 2020.Read also: Sports leagues across Indonesia suspend play to slow spread of COVID-19Following the postponement of the sporting events, the Youth and Sports Ministry’s Rp 270 billion (US$17 million) budget for 2020 Olympics National Training Camp (Pelatnas) was trimmed last week adjusting to President Joko “Jokowi” Widodo’s call to reallocate funds from the 2020 budget to the COVID-19 pandemic.House Commission X had demanded an intensive communication between the Sports Ministry and the Finance Ministry to reallocate the budget for athletes, officials and those in the sports field who were affected by COVID-19.“Some retired athletes and active ones have lost their income because of the postponement of many sports events this year,” he said.Topics :last_img read more