Philip Juico vows to fight POC move to declare him persona non grata
MANILA, Philippines—Philip Ella Juico, the embattled president of the Philippine Athletics Track and Field Association, is dead set on contesting the decision of the Philippine Olympic Committee to declare him a persona non grata following his rift with Olympian EJ Obiena.
The POC executive board approved the recommendation of its Ethic Committee to sanction Juico as 11 of its members voted in agreement while two others abstained.
“Of course, we will fight it,” said Juico in an interview with ANC’s After the Fact. “When they asked me to attend a hearing, the so-called clarificatory hearing, we attended but we said this is not within their jurisdiction.”
“We will contest and we will go all the way wherever we need to go.”
Juico contested that the matter between him and Obiena is within the realms of the Patafa, the country’s national sports association for track and field and athletics, and that it should be resolved without the POC’s hand.
The sports official added that the POC will only come in if there’s the NSA could not find a solution to the feud.
“This is an intra-NSA issue and under their own constitution, the Philippine Olympic Committee’s constitution, such intra-NSA issues are to be resolved first within the NSA and only when there is no satisfactory solution can the POC come in,” said Juico.
Obiena, who’s been training in Italy for the past two years, filed a complaint with both the POC and the IOC and pointed out the alleged harassment that Juico did towards him.
It was in November that Patafa ordered Obiena to return 85,000 euros after his alleged falsification of the liquidation reports of the payment made to coach Vitaly Petrov.
Juico also said that Patafa has an ongoing investigation for the past 44 days and that they invited Obiena but the pole vaulter rejected the invitation three times.
“I was already summoned by the POC Ethics Committee and I was charged with the harassment, which is not the issue. The issue is the money, where the money went, how it was used. That’s all,” said Juico.
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