Ukrainian shot putter Maksym Koval collected the men's shot put F20 gold medal this morning ©Getty Images

The International Paralympic Committee (IPC) has slammed "very abusive and ridiculous" social media comments following the decision to strip Malaysian shot putter Muhammad Ziyad Zolkefli of his Paralympic Games gold medal at Tokyo 2020. 

Ziyad clinched the men’s shot put F20 title with a world record throw of 17.94 metres only for the result to be scrubbed off for arriving late to the call room following a protest by Ukraine.

Ukrainian shot putter Maksym Koval was then awarded the gold medal, sparking an outcry on social media.

Malaysian Sports Minister Khairy Jamaluddin was among those to vent their dismay online, describing the decision as "shameful".

"An absolute disgrace that goes against the spirit of the Paralympics," wrote Jamaluddin in a post on Twitter.

"If it was a call room violation you should have not allowed them to compete in the first place.

"Mean spirited and petty.

"A stolen gold medal and world record."

Craig Spence, spokesperson for the IPC, said the National Paralympic Committee (NPC) of Ukraine was "deeply upset" after receiving "a lot of abuse" online.

"Since last night, there has been a massive outpouring of emotion from many Malaysians on social media," said Spence.

"It’s been very abusive and ridiculous in my opinion.

"Yes, you can be unhappy with our decision, but I am seeing comments on all our social media accounts which are nothing to do with men’s shot put F20 event.

"The gold medal eventually went to NPC Ukraine, and they are now coming under a lot of abuse from Malaysians.

"It’s bang out of order, I am sorry.

"Rules are rules.

"The decision was taken and it was not the Ukrainian’s fault that the Malaysians was late to the call room.

"I am really disappointed that such abuse happened on social media."

World Para Athletics confirmed that Ziyad, Ecuador’s Jordi Patricio Congo Villalba and Australia’s Todd Hodgetts all arrived late to the call room.

Under the organisation’s rules, athletes that are not present in the call room at the "relevant time as published in the call room schedule" will be shown in the results as "did not start".

World Para Athletics said that Ziyad, Congo Villalba and Hodgetts were allowed to compete "under protest" while the referee considered evidence as to why they were late.

However, it has been ruled that there was "no justifiable reason" for their failure to report to the call room on time.

According to the IPC, the NPC Ukraine said it was
According to the IPC, the NPC Ukraine said it was "deeply upset" by comments on social media after Maksym Koval replaced Muhammad Ziyad Zolkefli as the gold medallist ©Getty Images

The trio appealed the decision only for it to be upheld by World Para Athletics’ Jury of Appeal.

Spence revealed the reasons given for the trio’s failure to arrive on time were that they either "didn’t hear the announcement or it was in a language they couldn’t understand".

"I feel really sorry for the athletes, don’t get me wrong," said Spence.

"I know some people have said why didn’t you not let them start in the first place?

"Why did you let them compete, break the world record and then put them out of the competition?

"We didn’t have the full information before the event.

"Therefore, we didn’t want to say you are late, you are not going to start and then find out afterwards that there was a perfectly legitimate reason for why they couldn’t compete.

"That’s why we allowed them to compete under protest.

"We informed the teams and athletes and broadcasters that was the case.

"They were competing under protest which meant that at the end of the event they could be listed as DNS.

"Once we saw the evidence, the referee and the jury made the decision that they were late and the reason given wasn’t a particularly suitable one, so disappointment for all involved."

Ukraine claimed two medals with Koval topping the podium courtesy of a world record throw of 17.34m and Oleksandr Yarovyi taking silver with 17.30.

Greece’s Efstratios Nikolaidis also profited from the ruling against Ziyah as he was promoted to bronze with 15.93.