With the rising cases of coronavirus in Vietnam, the host country is calling for the postponement of the Southeast Asian (SEA) Games slated to take place from Nov. 21 to Dec. 2.

/ 12 June 2021

“The Vietnam Olympics Committee, the host for SEA Games 31, has sent a letter to countries informing them of its proposal to postpone SEA Games 31 to July 2022 due to the complicated situation of the Covid-19 pandemic,” according to Phap Luat Online.

According to additional reports coming from Vietnam, Hanoi and the 11 other locations for the games were some of the worst affected provinces.

Philippines, Brunei, Cambodia, Malaysia, Indonesia, Singapore, Thailand, and Timor Leste voted against the postponement, while Myanmar agreed to the proposal and Laos stayed neutral.

Despite their decision to vote for the continuation of the biennial games, local officials recognize Vietnam’s predicament and admit that the final decision rests with the country’s government.

“It is still the Vietnam government that had the final say on the matter in the staging of the SEA Games,” said Philippine Olympic Committee (POC) President Abraham Tolentino.

The government sports agency said that it will be respecting Vietnam’s decision either way.

“It’s okay with me and the PSC on whatever decision the host makes. If it’s going to be postponed, that will give us a longer time to prepare our athletes,” said POC commissioner Ramon Fernandez. 

“All our athletes will be vaccinated by then,” he added.

Another SEA Games Federation meeting will be held on June 24, according to Tolentino.