Pessimistic GAB suggests out-of-court settlement for boxer Espinosa
Games and Amusements Board (GAB) chairman Juan Ramon Guanzon expressed his concerns over the case Luisito Espinosa even after the Court of Appeals just last week ruled in favor of the former boxing champion.
Guanzon is pessimistic whether Espinosa will actually recieve his purse which was almost two decades unpaid.
“It’s just the Court of Appeals which made the decision, not the Supreme Court. It’s still going to be a long process and they can still appeal the decision to the higher court,” he said. “The ones who fooled him is not a nobody. He’s someone who is in a position of power.”
“What I suggest for Espinosa is to negotiate a settlement for the case,” said Guanzon.
In a decision by Associate Justice Ramon Cruz, the Appelate court ruled the estate of the late Rodolfo Nazario to give the boxer the unpaid guaranteed fight purse and interest of more than P17-million from his December 1997 bout against Argentinian Carlos Rios in Koronadal, South Cotabato.
Disappointed by the turnout of the case, Guanzon said that the board’s powers are limited and they cannot do anything to protect the fighters.
“GAB is only supervisory and regulatory. That’s why we’re always having a difficult time to resolve the boxers’ issues and problems, more so if it happens outside the country,” he said in the weekly PSA Forum in Shakey’s Malate on Tuesday.
Guanzon said that GAB’s functions are limited to suspensions and revocation of a promoter’s license when it comes to professional leagues.
But he said he had asked the Congress to amend the role of the board and give them the authority to further protect the fighters.
“GAB can only write a complaint, and then after that (nothing),” he said. “As it is now, the most we can do is revoke the license of any promoter, manager, or boxer who didn’t conform to our regulations. We’re free to formulate the regulations. But as to the punishment, it will have to require a Congressional act.”
Another issue GAB said it is trying to fix is the Rey Loreto case, where the promoters failed to give the boxer the guaranteed $40,000 purse after he stopped Nkosinathi Joyi in South Africa last March.
“GAB is helpless in his case,” said GAB boxing division chief Dr. Nasser Cruz. “It’s a very exclusive case because there are managers who flew in the fighters and just agree on the terms in the actual weigh-in.”
“In this case, it was fine when it all started and the problems just arose after the fight.” CFC