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Stumped!

Posted: 21 Mar 2011 09:40 PM PDT

Ministry, OCM questioning role and affiliation of SSEMM

Tuesday, March 22nd, 2011 12:27:00

KUALA LUMPUR: The Treasury Department may have to kick themselves for approving RM100,000 for the International Congress in Sports and Exercise Medicine that concluded last weekend.

The event was hosted by the Society of Sports & Exercise Medicine Malaysia (SSEMM).

Present were International Federation of Sports Medicine (FIMS) president Prof Dr Fabio Pigozzi and SSEMM president Prof Datuk Mohd Mydin Musa.

Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak and wife Datin Seri Rosmah Mansor attended the closing ceremony and were both awarded FIMS' Royal Plaque of Honour.

However, the others in the local sports medicine fraternity were totally perplexed.

They didn't even know about the event, much less be invited.

The Sports Ministry, Olympic Council of Malaysia (OCM), National Sports Insitute (NSI) and Malaysian Association of Sports Medicine (MASM) questioned SSEMM's role and affiliation, prompting the Treasury to investigate.

Among the renowned practitioners not invited were OCM deputy-president Tan Sri Dr M. Jegathesan and NSI director-general Datuk Dr Ramlan Aziz (pic).

Even Sports Minister Datuk Seri Ahmad Shabery Cheek was out of the loop. This matter was brought up at the post-cabinet meeting yesterday.

And Ramlan will be meeting with Treasury officials today to discuss the matter.

The sports medicine fraternity is represented by the Malaysian Association of Sports Medicine (MASM).

Established in 1973, MASM are affiliated to OCM, the Asian Games Federation and recognised by the Sports Ministry.

SSEMM, meanwhile, were registered with the Registrar of Societies on March 11, 2010 but are not recognised by OCM or the Ministry.

SSEMM claimed to be approved by the Ministry of Health (MoH). MASM's membership was "terminated" by FIMS last year, apparently because of "arrears".

However, MASM said they settled all outstanding payments, in accordance to the FIMS constitution. MASM have asked for a copy of the "letter of approval" from the MoH to SSEMM.

However, strangely, neither party could provide one.

A source said a MoH official claimed they were "unable to trace the letter". Efforts to contact MoH director-general Datuk Dr Hasan Abdul Rahman proved futile.

"According to our records, MASM are the only official body. When we saw there was one body (SSEMM) trying to take over the role of the other (MASM), we called up both parties to discuss. Unfortunately, SSEMM didn't respond," said Ramlan.

When asked if the RM100,000 allocation was from the Sports Ministry, Ramlan replied: "There has been no instruction (to release payment). If that happens, it would put us in a difficult spot."

MASM president Prof Dr John George was stumped.

"This is all very strange. We have asked FIMS to explain as there was no written notice of our termination. It is, therefore, unconstitutional to replace us with another body," said John.

"MASM will seek legal advice."

It was also learnt FIMS were attempting to resolve the matter amicably. Mailsport sent an email to SSEMM but until Press time, the body have yet to reply.

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Messi earns the most among superstars

Posted: 21 Mar 2011 09:38 PM PDT

Tuesday, March 22nd, 2011 12:27:00

PARIS: Barcelona wizard Lionel Messi (above), also known as "The Flea", is the highest paid footballer in the world while Real Madrid boss Jose Mourinho earns more than any other manager, according to a survey by France Football magazine.

The 23-year-old Messi, widely recognised as the world's best footballer and won the Ballon d'Or for the past two years, earns €31 million (RM133.8m) per annum.

This amount that he garnered in 2011 came from his salary and publicity deals and is €3.5m more than what Real superstar Cristiano Ronaldo earns.

Manchester United striker Wayne Rooney, a former teammate of Ronaldo at Old Trafford, is third in the list with an annual income of €20.7m.

US-based footballers, David Beckham of LA Galaxy and Thierry Henry of New York Red Bulls, are fifth and 11th in the list with earnings of €19m and €13.6m respectively.

In the manager's category, Mourinho heads the top-paid list as he earns €13.5m a year.

The Portuguese tactician, who won the Champions League as well as Serie A and the Coppa Italia with Italian giants Inter Milan last season, was appointed as manager for Real last summer.

Barca's Josep "Pep" Guardiola is second behind Mourinho with an annual income of €10.5m while Rafael Benitez, who is without a club at the moment after parting ways with the Nerazzurri last December, earned €10.2m.

England head coach Fabio Capello is fourth with a salary of €8.5m.

Last month Deloitte's annual report on European football revenues was released in which it was revealed Spanish giants Real and Barca are the top earning clubs in the world with Premier League powerhouse United following them in third.

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