Dis­abled man among 8,000 to join run

New Straits Times - - News -

KOTA KINABALU: A boy who used to iso­late him­self from oth­ers has now grown up to be an op­ti­mistic ath­lete.

Zulka­r­nain Mohd Rid­uan, 20, from here, who has learn­ing dis­abil­i­ties, scaled Mount Kinabalu when he was 11, rep­re­sented Asia in snow­shoe­ing and sev­eral sport­ing events, as well as foot­ball games in other states in Malaysia.

His fa­ther, Mohd Rid­uan Abdullah, said by en­gag­ing his third child in sports, Zulka­r­nain de­vel­oped into a bet­ter and in­de­pen­dent per­son.

“When he was younger, Zulka­r­nain sel­dom talked to peo­ple, had dif­fi­culty look­ing af­ter him­self at school and even tried to burn down the house,” he said af­ter the launch of the United Na­tions In­ter­na­tional Chil­dren’s Emer­gency Fund (Unicef)-Bor­neo In­ter­na­tional Marathon here yes­ter­day.

Zulka­r­nain was among 100 chil­dren with dis­abil­i­ties ex­pected to join at least 8,000 run­ners for the marathon on May 7.

Manch­ester United Fans club (Malaysia) is spon­sor­ing five chil­dren from Sarawak to join the event. Now in its 10th year, race di­rec­tor Datuk Dr Heng Aik Cheng said this year, the or­gan­iser would part­ner with Unicef to pro­mote the in­clu­sion of chil­dren with dis­abil­i­ties. The reg­is­tra­tion fee would be waived for per­sons with dis­abil­i­ties and money raised from the event would go to non-profit or­gan­i­sa­tions.

The event was launched by Sabah Chief Min­is­ter Datuk Seri Musa Aman.

PIC BY IZHARI ARIF­FIN

Sabah Chief Min­is­ter Datuk Seri Musa Aman look­ing at the medals won by Zulka­r­nain Mohd Rid­uan af­ter launch­ing the marathon in Kota Kinabalu yes­ter­day.

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