PSC wants 'peaceful resolution' between Obiena, Patafa | Inquirer Sports

PSC wants ‘peaceful resolution’ between Obiena, Patafa

By: - Reporter / @BLozadaINQ
/ 04:42 PM January 05, 2022
Philippines' Ernest John Obiena competes in the men's pole vault final during the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games at the Olympic Stadium in Tokyo on August 3, 2021.

FILE – The Philippines’ Ernest John Obiena competes in the men’s pole vault final during the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games at the Olympic Stadium in Tokyo on August 3, 2021. (Photo by Ina FASSBENDER / AFP)

MANILA, Philippines—The Philippine Sports Commission laid down four demands in its attempt to clean up the mess between EJ Obiena and the Philippine Athletics Track and Field Association (Patafa).

PSC Chairman William “Butch” Ramirez said in a statement said that what stemmed from a liquidation issue produced “several ugly faces” including the Philippine Olympic Committee declaring Patafa president Philip Ella Juico persona non grata.

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Ramirez and the PSC Board’s demands are as follows:

1. We demand for EJ to immediately finish his liquidation of accounts so that we can continue to support him.

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2. We demand for Patafa to reconsider their declaration of dropping EJ from their rolls, provide him an appeal mechanism and not to execute their decision immediately.

3. We demand for the POC to bridge the two parties as the mother organization of both and reconsider their decision of declaring Mr. Juico persona non-grata on the premise of promoting peace in elite sports.

4. We demand for the Patafa, EJ, the POC and all the parties who wish to stoke the fire of this mad issue to stop. You have all publicly recognized the PSC and asked us to help resolve the issue, please listen to us on this simple request. Stop issuing public statements and come to the table with us to discuss this matter.

“We have said this before and we are saying this again. Let us resolve this like sportsmen,” said Ramirez. “The issue has dragged on and have pulled the nation’s name to the mire of negativity in the international sports scene. We all pledge our love for country, we trust that you will heed our call immediately, for love of flag.”

Patafa, back in November 2021, demanded that Obiena return 85,000 euros after the pole vaulter allegedly falsified liquidation reports regarding payments made to coach Vitaly Petrov.

On Tuesday, Patafa dropped Obiena from the national team and declared the Tokyo Olympian’s longtime adviser and backer Jim Lafferty persona non grata as part of its investigative committee’s recommendations.

The committee also recommended filing a criminal complaint of estafa over 6,000 euros, around P345,000, which is the amount allowed as pay to Petrov from May 2018 to August 2018.

“We are here, we have offered our neutral table to seek a peaceful resolution to this from the very beginning. It is one thing to declare your stand publicly and one thing to follow it through with action. If we really all desire to see this resolution, please listen to us,” said Ramirez.

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TAGS: EJ Obiena, Patafa, Philippine Sports Commission, William Ramirez
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