LOVE him or loathe him, it is difficult to deny that Malaysian Athletic Federation President Dato Karim Ibrahim has this uncanny confidence in himself.
If not he would not have made this statement after the announcement of the candidates list for the 16th elections of the MAF Executive Board.
“I have yet to lose a contest in MAF so I am optimistic that I will once again prevail.” said Karim.
Sitting across the table when the sealed envelopes were being opened by returning Officer Dato Sieh Kok Chi, was his president post opponent Dato SM Muthu.
Ironically the duo were rubbing mates in the last elections.
What was more ironic was the fact that sitting next to Karim and happily chatting away was incumbent Vice President M. Iyaru from Perlis, the very man whose state proposed Muthu to contest against Karim.
But as soon as the interviews were over, Itaru walked around the room with Muthu to greet Journalists individually, shaking hands till he came to this blogger.
The duo then conversed in Tamil before Muthu extended his hand.
And what transpired after that is best kept by the three of us and a journalist behind me.
That incident set the tone for I believe they Karim will not only have a fight but a battle to overcome.
Outspoken brash with selective hearing ability., there is no denying that Karim is knowledgeable in athletics is second to none.
But that is overshadowed by his brash approach towards administration – something that is said to be the key factor as to why a challenge was launched in his leadership.
But frankly they should have put up a stronger candidate then Muthu.
He was unable to address the issues at hand affecting athletics in his interview with the media on Monday
When posed a question as to what his manifesto would be in running for President, his reply ,” Let me get elected first , then I will reveal my manifesto.”
Now my dear Mr. Muthu, a manifesto is pledges a candidate makes to gain support to be elected into a position or seat.
A manifesto is outlining what areas you will look into should be returned into office as the head honcho of MAF
Agreed many manifestos just end up collecting dust after a candidate is elected, but Muthu needs to convince the states as to why he is better then Karim.
If the general consensus is that Karim is a dictator , then why was there no move to remove him from office earlier through a motion of no confidence?
Having seen Karim work, that guy probably does more then all the Executive Board Members put together.
In the 2018 Malaysian Open, I had helped Karim do administrative work in the run up to the event and he was spending hours in office. As a matter of fact we were in the MAF office on Election Day ( May 9) finalising details, that speaks volumes of his dedication towards his job.
And I fully understand and comprehend his failure to delegate responsibilities to others, a weakness that was allowed to be manifested over the years.
Karim is no easy person to work with but under the present circumstances is the only person that can run MAF with an iron fist and keep it in the right lanes.
Changing batons at this stage could well be more destructive for the sport that has suffered over the years with no proper development or domestic events,
And talking about affiliates – they are so fickle minded, as evident with FTAAA submitting an empty nomination form .
Surely an experience Dato Vegi would know better then do that,
But he was sending a signal – that he is walking on the fence, unlike Iyaru who made his affiliation crystal clear.
They must all close ranks. If not they will end up as a rekey team that never passes the nation or a high jumper that runs under the bar in all three attempts, deliberately failing to get his run up right.