POC chief on SEA Games hosting glitches: ‘It’s normal’
MANILA, Philippines—Philippine Olympic Committee president Abraham “Bambol” Tolentino said it’s not unusual for a country to encounter mishaps when hosting an event of such magnitude as the Southeast Asian Games.
The country’s hosting has been peppered by issues left and right, which include food, logistics and lodging of participating athletes even before the official opening of the biennial meet.
“It’s normal,” Tolentino said of what he described as minor glitches in hosting during the PSA Forum on Tuesday at Amelie Hotel Manila. “I’ve experienced that myself.”
Amid the growing concerns, Tolentino urged Filipinos to rally behind the country’s bets and focus on solutions instead.
“We all make mistakes that’s why we should work together. Those in the social media, the netizens, let’s move on first with our hosting,” said the congressman and Philippine cycling chief.
Tolentino asked everyone to “stand as one” with the SEA Games just four days away from formally opening at Philippine Arena in Bocaue, Bulacan.
“Let’s just focus on our athletes. With this, my statement will be not only for us to ‘we win as one’ but ‘we stand as one’ in hosting this SEA Games,’” he added.
“All these problems have solutions, and they are being addressed and being solved,” Tolentino said.
The Philippines is staging the regional meet for the fourth time—the first since 2005—and it won’t host the Games again until after a decade.
“Remember, the next time we will host this could be in 2030. So, let’s not pull each other down. This is for the country,” he said.