KUCHING: Bonnie Bunyau Gustin has made the country proud when the Jalur Gemilang was raised and the national anthem Negaraku played after he delivered Malaysia’s first ever Paralympic gold in powerlifting with a new games record in Tokyo.

State Youth and Sports Minister Datuk Abdul Karim Rahman Hamzah when congratulating the Kuching-born power-lifter said it was indeed the best National Day present for the country.

“Finally, we see the Jalur Gemilang raised and Negaraku is played at the Paralympics… it was such a proud moment, especially for us in Sarawak,” he said.

He said Bonnie had lived up to his top billing in the men’s 72kg competition which was held earlier today. The 22-year-old is well known to be the man to beat and he has delivered more than the gold medal but also a new Paralympic record with a lift of 228kg. More News

“The gold medal is also our nation’s best powerlifting achievement since 2008,” he said.

“We are indeed proud of Bonnie’s achievement because during the competition, he went on to lift 228kg (deadlift) to successfully break the Paralympics record by 1kg previously held by Rasool Mohsin of Iran,” he said.

Karim hoped that Bonnie’s achievement would be an inspiration for other Malaysians and Sarawakian athletes to achieve glory globally.

Meanwhile, Welfare, Community Wellbeing, Women, Family and Childhood Development Minister Datuk Seri Fatimah Abdullah hoped that the public would now see people with disabilities in a different light.

“The public should not only look at their disabilities but their potential and abilities. From my experience of working with people with disabilities, they don’t want people to pity them but they want dignity and equal opportunities as others in the society,” she said.

“We should provide better accessibilities, opportunities for them, in terms of infrastructure, intervention and rehabilitation as well as education, sports and employment. We want Sarawak to be a socially inclusive society with no one being side-lined.

Source: New Straits Times