By : Ajitpal Singh
THE Malaysia Taekwondo Association (MTA), has decided to accept all clubs as associate members with no conditions attached.
Those who decide to take up the offer have until July 31 to do so.
MTA president Ho Kam Phaw said these clubs will have one representation in the council.
"One vote is guaranteed for the clubs in the council and they are free to stand for elections," Kam Phaw told reporters after the joint-working committee meeting with the National Sports Council (NSC) in Bukit Jalil yesterday.
"We have sent out the invitation forms to our ex-associate members who are now either under the Malaysia Taekwondo Federation (MTF) or the Malaysia Taekwondo Clubs Association (MTCA) three years weeks ago, and we hope to get a favourable response from them soon.
"We hope all of them will accept the invitation as we need to concentrate on developing the sport."
It is learnt that only two clubs have responded to the invitation. However MTA is confident more clubs will join soon.
However, he stressed that those accepting the MTA's invitation will be representing themselves in the association and not MTF or MTCA.
"MTF and MTCA are not recognised bodies. We are the legal body for the sport in the country."
However MTF and MTCA are registered with the Sports Commissioner's Office under the Sports Development Act (1997) and it was stated earlier that all three would work together.
Kam Phaw also said exponents from all clubs are free to attend trials for international assignments, organised by MTA.
"Trials are open to all but if a particular exponent is selected, then the club he is representing must be affiliated with MTA.
"However, there are options for those selected to represent the country, such as joining a registered club or their respective state associations."
MTA will be organising a trial to pick 10 exponents for the Asian Junior Championships in Jordan on Aug 20-26 at the NSC on Sunday.
The trial is open to all clubs, regardless of their current affiliation.
MTA was deregistered by Sports Commissioner Tan Sri Elyas Omar in May, 2005 under the Sports Development Act. MTA pursued the matter in court but Sports Minister Datuk Seri Azalina Othman Said recently said the deregistration would be rescinded based on an appeal.
Azalina had said then that MTA's deregistration would be revoked if certain conditions are met. However, what the conditions are remain unknown.
Meanwhile, NSC director general Datuk Zolkples Embong said MTA will be responsible for all athletes' preparation for international assignments.
"We will be working with them in preparing athletes for the Beijing Olympic qualifiers and the Korat Sea Games (Dec 6-15)."
The Olympic Qualifiers will be held in Manchester, England (Aug 28-29) and Vietnam (Nov 28-29).
The exponents under the elite programme are Rusfredy Tokan Petrus, Mohd Afifuddin Omar Sidek, Ryan Chong, Che Chew Chan, Elaine Teo, Nurul Nadia Mahamat, Noordiana Norrizan and Noornadia Norrizan.