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AWARENESS: The run is also to celebrate 10 years of partnership in Mycat
KUALA LUMPUR: MALAYSIAN Conservation Alliance for Tigers (Mycat) is organising the inaugural Maybank Wild Tiger Run which will be held at Bukit Jalil Park on Nov 9.
The programme, which is sponsored by Maybank, aims to raise awareness on the plight of the Malayan tigers and to raise funds for conservation efforts by Mycat.
Mycat is an alliance of non-governmental organisations comprising the Malaysian Nature Society (MNS), Traffic Southeast Asia, Wildlife Conservation Society-Malaysia Programme and WWF-Malaysia.
The run is also to celebrate 10 years of partnership between the NGOs on tiger conservation in Malaysia.
Maybank corporate affairs head Eliza Mohamed said tigers have a special cultural significance as it is part of our country's emblem.
"Tigers play a critical role in our ecosystem. As the top predator, it controls the population of its prey species and when its numbers face a dramatic change, it throws the entire ecosystem out of balance.
"Since humans are part of the ecosystem, any changes will inevitably affect us all.
"Since 2010, we have contributed almost RM1.5 million to support conservation efforts," said Eliza during a press conference at Maybank Tower, here, recently.
Ten years ago, only about 500 tigers roamed Malaysian jungles and today, the number is even less. Despite conservation efforts by the government, authorities and Mycat, forests and tigers are still at threat.
WWF-Malaysia executive director and chief executive officer Datuk Dr Dionysius Sharma said poaching is a major threat to the cats' survival.
"The decreasing number of tigers in the country, as well as worldwide, is worrying. We can make a change by protecting these mammals.
"With a renewed sense of urgency and hope, we will strive harder to save our national heritage -- the Malayan tiger," he said.
MNS executive director Mohamed Shah Redza Hussein said: "Tigers are important for the conservation of other species, including their habitat that is our natural forests."
Present were Wildlife Conservation Society-Malaysia Programme director Dr Melvin Gumal and Traffic Southeast Asia senior communications officer Elizabeth John.
The run will consist of a 10km competitive run and a 3km fun run. There are five categories for the 10km run -- men's open, men's junior veteran, men's senior veteran, women's open and women's veteran. The entry fee is RM50 while early birds will only need to pay RM40.
The winners for first to fifth place will receive cash prizes.
For more information and registration, visit www.malayantiger.net.