Following the recent discoveries on Future Music Festival Asia (FMFA) 2014, the Malaysian association of Arts, Live, International Festivals and Events (ALIFE) have expressed their sheer disbelief via an official statement.
In case you missed it, The Star published a front page piece just today (1st June) on what really caused the FMFA 2014 deaths. It was revealed that drugs were not the cause of the deaths of the 6 people at FMFA last year but instead, heatstroke. The Star cited University Malaya Medical Centre (UMMC) forensic pathology department head Prof Dr K. Nadesan, who confirmed the cause of the deaths.
UMMC handled the post-mortem for 3 of the dead and also treated 9 others. Dr Nadedan said those who died tested positive for ecstasy or MDMA, but it was much lower than the average recreational level of 0.1 to 0.25 microgram per millilitre. Autopsies on the “virtually dried up” bodies, including one which had a temperature of 39°C, led Dr Nadesan to rule the deaths as caused by heatstroke.
As such, ALIFE has spoken up with regards to the new findings:
The association of Arts, Live, International Festivals and Events (ALIFE) are shocked at the latest report that has surfaced in The Star today regarding the causes of death at Future Music Festival Asia 2014 (FMFA 2014). Like the Malaysian public, the arts and live events industry, for over a year, has been led to believe that drugs played a decisive factor to the unfortunate deaths at FMFA 2014. Since the incident of that day, FMFA has been made as a scapegoat for the decline of the live events industry in Malaysia, particularly when it comes to events that promote the Electronic Dance Music (EDM) genre. Shows with EDM elements have been rejected by authorities for fear of similar drug related deaths recurring. With the latest discovery and in the interest of full transparency, we call on the Royal Malaysian Police (PDRM) to first and foremost make public the investigation reports on FMFA 2014, information which till this day, is only privy to only the PDRM.
Our hearts also go out to the families and friends of those affected by this tragedy as they are once again, forced to seek closure over a year on.
Over the past year, several major events in both Malaysia and Singapore were cancelled with the “serious concerns over drug abuse” excuse, such as “Life in Color” in April 2014, “FMFA15” in Singapore in March 2015, and the recent “Thirst 2015: We Are All Stardust” in April 2015.
The tragedy cast a gloom over the Malaysian live events scene, particularly those that were linked to dance music, and the abrupt cancellations that followed undoubtedly cost organisers huge financial losses, the trust of the gungho ticket buyers, and above all, left thousands unhappy and weighed down by disappointment.
For more information, visit ALIFE’s Facebook page.