PSC allots another P1.2 billion for athletes training in bid to win SEA Games overall title
There was never a time in the history of Philippine sports that a government agency has allotted—and is prepared to spend—over a billion pesos in preparation for a big international event such as the Southeast Asian Games.
The Philippine Sports Commission (PSC), through Chair Butch Ramirez, announced on Wednesday that the agency has appropriated P1.2 billion for the training and foreign exposure of national athletes training for the 30th edition of the Games the country is hosting later this year.
“If we take good care of our athletes, the heart and soul of the Games, we might be able to deliver a miracle in the SEA Games,” Ramirez said during the signing of the tripartite agreement among the PSC, the Philippine Olympic Committee (POC) and the Philippine Southeast Asian Games Organizing Committee (Phisgoc) at Rizal Memorial Sports Complex.
According to Ramirez, the PSC initially allocated P600 million for Filipino athletes who will see action in 57 sports during the Games slated to run from Nov. 30-Dec. 11.
The Philippines won the overall championship in 2005—the only time it did so—when the country last hosted the Games.
“We are adding P400-P600 million more for foreign exposure,” Ramirez said.
The P1.2 billion will be on top of the P600-million budget allocated for the sports equipment of the athletes for the Games set in Metro Manila, Subic and Clark New City.
Ramirez was also pleased to witness the unity among the POC, Phisgoc and the PSC as they cemented their partnership with defined roles.
POC president Abraham “Bambol” Tolentino represented the local Olympic body, the franchise holder of the Games, while Phisgoc chief executive officer Ramon “Tats” Suzara signed on the agreement for the organization of the Games with transparency.
“It (signing) came a little bit late, but still, this is a historic day,” Tolentino said.
The POC will form Team Philippines apart from overseeing Phisgoc’s organization and accounts for all necessary expenses, including sponsorships, donations and the liquidation of government support in accordance with relevant government rules and regulations.
The Phisgoc, on the other hand, will primarily be responsible for the actual preparations, organization, management and execution of the country’s hosting of the 11-nation biennial meet.
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