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Bare Eye

Buhay Kamao has got a punch!

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IT’S no fault of the president of the Mindanao Professional Boxing Association if she had sounded strictly frantic in making sure her announcement of a big launching event would get published.

Ageless Yoly Alfante, who got her first involvement in boxing at age seven, sent a total of eight messages and made three calls Saturday to remind this reporter about today’s launch.

Text No. 1: “We would like to invite you to the Buhay Kamao Foundation launching and press conference to be held at 3262 Espiritu Street, Panapaan 111, Bacoor, Cavite on Jan. 15.”

Please e-mail the details, she was advised.

She did but the mail did not get through.

* * *

“Please check the Spam, will also resend it.”

She did: “Gud am, ito po yung venue…c nora s Buhay Kamao. Galing Coastal, take Talaba, first corner, kanan sa Maliksi, second kanto left Panapaan 3, look for Sophia venue b4 Cavite School of Life and Landmark.”

“Wow. Am not sure how I could find it.”

“I did invite Manny (Pacquiao) thru Rose, his secretary, with invitation card. Hope he can come. Gerry Pen for sure he’s coming.”

* * *

Now to the details: This is a call for assistance and support for the Buhay Kamao Foundation.

Boxing, and not only Pacquiao, needs our prayers and support.

Yoly says Buhay Kamao will be a non-profit organization with a main goal of creating a sustainable boxing program for the development of young and promising boxers in the country.

Main goal is to make world champions out of as many Pinoy fighters as possible.

* * *

This is not the first time we’re hearing about these opt-repeated plans.

But this may yet be the closest they could come to full fruition.

For one, Yoly says Pacquiao has agreed to be honorary chair.

Not that Pacquiao owns a sterling record of pursuing and completing crusades and noble plans.

But Yoly is firm in her crusade.

“This is for the boxers’ benefits, Tito,” she swears. “I’ve been planning this for long. Naawa talaga ako, I really pitied these poor boxers.”

She singles out an obscure fighter from Mindanao who died recently.

“There was no one to help, walang tumulong, because he was poor, nameless. Hindi sikat.”

* * *

With the foundation, boxers, no matter how poor and obscure, would be assured of decent burial.

Among the goals: Help retired boxers look for new jobs or assist them to start new livelihood; provide assistance and hospitalization for active or retired boxers; assist in giving or looking for scholarships to deserving children of retired boxers.

The foundation will be composed of a nine-man board that will choose its own officers. There will be no memberships but donors will be recognized as honorary members.

Why is Yoly Alfante doing all this?

No sure reply.

* * *

Instead, she sent a statement saying her parents, Romeo and Asuncion Alfante, were managers and promoters in Davao City. Among their boxers were Young Larry, Nene Montano, Bert Nabalatan, Phio Gumaya, Fel Clemente. She herself managed former WBF bantamweight titlist Kid Orais and Pete Anacaya, PBF minifly champ, to name only two.

Yoly also remembers having assisted, in her humble way, in sending Pacquiao over to California after he lost his WBC flyweight title to Medgoen Sinsurat in Bangkok in 2009.

Yoly finally had a reunion with Pacquiao in General Santos recently.

She got emboldened into pursuing her dream foundation after she was promised support by the legendary eight-division world champion.


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