KARACHI: The Athletics Federation of Pakistan (AFP) has shifted the 44th National Athletics Championship to Islamabad due to concerns about Karachi’s law-and-order situation.
AFP President Major General (retd) Akram Sahi said there were serious concerns for athletes and their families to travel to Karachi which is why the federation was forced to move the event.
“There were people coming from all over the country and security was the major concern,” Sahi told The Express Tribune adding that Interior Minister Rehman Malik’s comments about expanding the Lyari operation added concerns.
Karachi was due to host the national championship after nearly 40 years and Sahi acknowledged it was a huge blow to the city.
“I know how disappointing it is for Karachi and that’s why we’ve decided to give Karachi a chance to host next year’s event because they deserve it.”
Meanwhile, Sahi also acknowledged the need for an electronic timer but said that owing to financial constraints, the AFP was not in a position to invest in one.
“Electronic timers make a huge difference as they bring accuracy. A timer costs Rs30m so we’re not able to have one of our own.”
Published in The Express Tribune, May 8th, 2012.