Go raises threat of TRO on POC electionsBy June Navarro
Philippine Daily Inquirer
MANILA, Philippines — Athletics chief Go Teng Kok will seek a temporary restraining order if he is disqualified from running against Jose “Peping’’ Cojuangco Jr. in the Philippine Olympic Committee elections set Nov. 30 at the Alabang Country Club.
The POC secretariat Wednesday received the official copy of the Supreme Court decision junking the appeal of the local Olympic body and upholding the ruling of the Pasig RTC that Go, president of the Philippine Amateur Track and Field Association, cannot be declared “persona non grata’’ by the POC general assembly.
Tasked to screen the eligibility of the candidates, the election committee chaired by former congressman Victorico Chaves earlier said an authenticated copy of the SC decision would allow Go to challenge Cojuangco for the POC presidency.
But a reliable source said the POC will file a motion for reconsideration before the high tribunal after receiving the SC ruling on Go’s case.
“I knew it all along. They will try everything to disqualify me,’’ Go told the Inquirer. “Once they file for a motion (for reconsideration), I will seek a TRO before the election happens.’’
Top POC officials, however, maintained that a TRO from the courts is tantamount to government intervention that could force the International Olympic Committee to suspend the Philippines in all IOC-sanctioned events, including the Olympics.
Go said the Supreme Court has already sent copies of the decision to POC lawyers as early as Sept. 26 but the latter has resorted to dilatory tactics to keep him from running.
“For two weeks, they kept on saying they hadn’t received the (SC) decision yet. They tried to buy time. Should they file for a motion, the case will drag on, rendering me ineligible to run,’’ said Go.
“I can file the TRO any time and nobody can stop me.’’
Under Cojuangco’s ticket are Tom Carrasco of triathlon (chair), Joey Romasanta of karatedo (1st VP), Jeff Tamayo of soft tennis (2nd VP), Julian Camacho of wushu (treasurer), Prospero Pichay (auditor) and executive board members Dave Carter (judo), Cynthia Carrion (gymnastics), Jonne Go (canoe-kayak) and sailing’s Ernesto Echauz.
The opposition ticket is not carrying Go and has not fielded any challenger against Cojuangco.
Heading the opposition are Monico Puentevella of weightlifting (POC chair), Manny Lopez (1st VP), Abraham “Bambol’’ Tolentino of chess (2nd VP), Romy Ribano of squash (treasurer), Godofredo Galindez of golf (auditor) and executive board members Victor Africa of fencing, baseball’s Hector Navasero and Generoso Dungo of volleyball.
A forum for POC bets is set today at the AVR Bldg., Philsports Complex.