IPOH, Aug 24 -- The role of sports in nation building and uniting the people should be recognised, prioritised and not be considered merely as minor recreational and "peripheral" activities, said Raja Permaisuri Perak Tuanku Zara Salim.
Her Royal Highness said, therefore, the number of sports facilities should be increased and participation of the people in sports must be encouraged.
In conjunction with the 62nd National Day celebration, Her Royal Highness said the government called for serious attention to be given to explore sports as an instrument of unifying people of all races, cultures, religions, and languages ??by intensifying various activities, especially involving young people.
“Young Malaysians who are given a larger space through various sports activities, Insya Allah (God Willing) will be healthy, active and disciplined.
“They will possess social communication skills that will build team spirit and loyalty, and be able to appreciate the strengths and weaknesses of people, as well as show a sense of responsibility and leadership qualities,” she said at the launch of the Tuanku Zara Aquatic Centre at the Ipoh City Council Sports Complex here today.
In addition, Tuanku Zara said sports also plays various roles including developing character and personality, educating a person to have mental, emotional and physical strength, besides to stay focused with an aim as well as having determination, endurance and competitive spirit.
“Sports also traind people to be grateful and appreciate the role of individuals in the aftermath of success, and at the same time, educate people to accept defeat sportsmanlike without feeling disappointment and work harder to win,” she added.
On the Tuanku Zara Aquatic Centre, the Raja Permaisuri Perak said it created history for memorialising her name.
“Even more nostalgic, water sports especially pool sports is very close to my heart. During my school years, I was very active in swimming and was selected to represent Perak,” Tuanku Zara said.
The Tuanku Zara Aquatic Centre here, which has one each of international-standard swimming pool, diving pool and a special warm-up pool, was also used during the 2018 Malaysia Games (Sukma).
Since Nov 1, 2018, the centre has opened to the public for use its adult pool and two children’s pool, There is an admission fee and the centre is open daily except Mondays.