Sat, 25 Mar 2000

Patuan expected to stay at PRSI

JAKARTA (JP): Athletes and coaches expressed hope on Friday that the Indonesian Swimming Federation (PRSI) official in charge of athletes development, Patuan Simatupang, would change his mind and not resign from his post.

National women's diver Shenny Ratna Amelia said, "I'm really sorry to hear the news but I hope Pak Patuan is still willing to stay at PRSI."

Men's swimmer Richard Sam Bera said, "As I represent swimmers, I hope the internal conflict can be solved soon. Whatever the result of today's meeting, we will support it either if Pak Patuan quits or will compromise and remain at PRSI. Even if there is a problem within the organization, athletes will stick to our commitment to reach our best achievements."

Swimming coach Radja Nasution said that PRSI had had good management for less than three months.

"As a coach I feel depressed about the situation. I hope it won't happen. If there are some people who can't join PRSI, please resign because we are moving forward to improve our achievements internationally."

"I don't know who deserves to be in the organization to develop swimming in the country. But I hope Pak Patuan will remain at his post and we promise to support him."

Patuan said on Thursday that he resigned from PRSI on Monday and the resignation was approved by chairman Rahardi Ramelan on the same day.

Rahardi told reporters that he had spoken to Patuan and called other officials to have a meeting after the media briefing.

"Teamwork is really necessary in an organization. We need to combine people who can master swimming technically with the ability of organizational management. But this matter is not a big deal to me. Don't blow it up too much," he said. "I don't want to expose the problem openly to the public."

Patuan complained earlier that the official in charge of competition, Lisa Siregar, changed the decision to stage the national championships and the ASEAN age group championships in Bali and wanted to move them to Jakarta.

Lisa herself denied the accusation, saying she only made comparisons about the facilities available in Bali and Jakarta.

"I didn't veto the decision. I just made suggestions. They can say many things and that's fine with me."

Lisa also said that she did not lie about Wisnu Wardhana's shoulder injury.

"I consulted directly with Dr. James Tangkudung after Wisnu fell in his house when it was flooded. It was not because he played basketball."

PRSI will send Richard, Wisnu, twins Felix and Albert Sutanto and Akbar Nasution in the men's side and Elsa Manora Nasution and Siripiya Sutanto in the women's to the Asian Championships in Pusan, South Korea from March 29 to April 2. It will also send divers Shenny, Eka Purnama Indah, Muhammad Nasrullah and Sukran Jamjami. Lenny Puspita and Tyas Titisari will compete in the synchronized swimming event. (yan)