SEA Games: Singsoc apologises for turning away ticket holders at closing ceremony

SEA Games: Singsoc apologises for turning away ticket holders at closing ceremony
PHOTO: The New Paper

SINGAPORE - The Singapore SEA Games Organising Committee (Singsoc) has apologised after many people were turned away from the SEA Games closing ceremony on Tuesday despite being having tickets.

Some people had been told that they could not enter the National Stadium as it was "full", Channel NewsAsia reported on Tuesday night.

Some spectators arrived to find huge crowds outside the stadium and were told to walk from gate to gate because their assigned entrances were getting too crowded.

Officials later allowed some spectators to enter the stadium, but these spectators had to stand during the ceremony.

As tension grew outside the stadium, some ticket holders became frustrated and told the volunteers off.

Singsoc posted a statement on the SEA Games 2015 Facebook page apologising for "the inconvenience caused and disappointment of those affected".

"As a significant proportion of the spectators were at the gates just before the start of the ceremony, there was a need to adjust entry gates and seating arrangements to enable them to be seated as quickly as possible. Consequently, some gates had to be closed for safety reasons."

The apology drew angry comments from some people who were turned away at the ceremony.

One Facebook user Evelyn Tansy said that with the exception of two, most gates were closed when she was there. "And in the end we were still refused entry. Bad planning for overselling your tickets," the user said.

Another netizen by the name of Tan Ren Ce said that spectators were not properly assigned seats and many elderly people were told to walk long distances up the stairs.

The user said: "I hate to say this, but your #SEAgames2015 #ClosingCeremony was extremely bad."

"Seriously, what's the use of printing tickets if this was the mess you want?" he asked.

In its apology, Singsoc said that it would be providing a refund to those who had tickets but could not be seated. In addition, the affected ticket holders will also receive a supporters' medallion.

ljessica@sph.com.sg

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