Tolentino eyes permanent office space for POC
Philippine Olympic Committee president Abraham “Bambol’’ Tolentino is chasing another legacy aside from finally seizing the elusive gold medal from the coming Tokyo Olympics.
With an abode it cannot call its own, the POC is planning to build a permanent home under Tolentino, something his predecessors have not pulled off since the local Olympic body came into existence over a century ago.
“Besides the gold medal (in the Olympics), this is the dream that I want to achieve in my next four years,’’ said Tolentino during the Philippine Sportswriters Association forum on Tuesday.
“It will stand as a concrete symbol of the Olympic movement in the Philippines,” added Tolentino, the Cavite representative who officially began his fresh term as POC chief at the start of the year.
Tolentino rued the fact that for the past 110 years, the POC doesn’t have a property where the organization recognized by the International Olympic Committee can house its offices, boardroom and a museum, among others.
“It’s sad, but we are like informal settlers without a permanent address. I think we are just one of the few or the only one (from among the countries who participate in the Olympics) without a permanent office building,’’ said Tolentino
For now, the POC is sitting on an office space provided for by the Philippine Sports Commission in a building inside the Philsports Complex in Pasig City.
The POC has been in that situation since it was created in 1911 when it was still known as the Philippine Amateur Athletic Federation, which was renamed to POC in 1975.
Tolentino said he would appeal to the national government through Senator Bong Go, the Senate committee on sports chair, to help the POC find an available lot inside the Cultural Center of the Philippines Complex along Roxas Boulevard facing Manila Bay.
:A stand-alone permanent building for the POC will create more awareness about sports and our athletes. I hope we can have one in a presentable place inside the CCP Complex,’’ said Tolentino in the weekly forum backed by Smart, San Miguel Corporation, Go For Gold, Pagcor, Milo, Braska and Hotel Amelie.
“Other countries have a national Olympic committee building along major thoroughfares just like in Thailand, so people easily get to know about them,’’ added Tolentino, who will prioritize the matter in the first meeting of the new POC executive board on January 12.
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