Nothing illegal about race, says MAM
“The safety conditions were fulfilled, but on race day, crowd breaches were a problem,” MAM acting CEO Datuk Razlan Razali told theSun, adding that the association is conducting a thorough investigation into the fatal accident.
He said MAM, which has been affiliated with the Youth and Sports Ministry since 2007 and has organised between 20 and 25 events so far, had every right to sanction the race as there was nothing illegal about it.
On Sunday evening, Razlan had been quoted by theSun as saying MAM had wanted to withdraw its sanction as certain safety measures were not complied with on the day of the event.
“There is nothing illegal about the event because all aspects were covered with regard to safety and insurance cover including spectators and third parties,” said Razlan yesterday, adding that MAM marshals on duty during the race were experienced and had been marshals since 1999.
Meanwhile, Kuantan police chief ACP Abdul Aziz Salleh said police have recorded statements from Siti Suhaiza Seman, 38, whose husband, Izwan Isa, 39, and daughter Nur Zulaikha, five, were killed in the tragedy, which occurred when a race kart veered out of control and crashed through some barriers into the crowd, injuring several others including Siti Suhaiza and her son Muhammad Izz Danial.
He said police have also recorded statements from the organisers and several kart drivers to help in the probe but did not disclose their names nor the number of individuals questioned.
The Eimarace was organised by the Malaysia-Japan International Institute of Technology (MJIIT) of Universiti Teknologi Malaysia.
In a related development, the Automobile Association of Malaysia (AAM) has said MAM has no authority to sanction safety measures in auto racing events.
“Following the standard operating procedures, MAM is not a body that can authorise and sanction these races. We (AAM) have to give the green light before authorising any motorsports events,” AAM supervisor Ahmad Suhaimi Abdullah told theSun.
“They (MAM) have not consulted AAM for the past two or three years. The MAM is not an authorisation body. They are just a grassroots organisation,” he said, adding that MAM should have consulted AAM on safety aspects such as track design, speed limits and medical personnel availability.
“Even the Formula One race in Malaysia has to get our approval before they go ahead so I don’t see why the organisers of the Eimarace did not get our approval,” he added.
Ahmad Suhaimi also highlighted that AAM was powerless to stop the race because it had no knowledge of the event, which apparently lacked emergency medical workers and safety marshals.