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PSC chairman Ramirez: 2019 SEA Games to push through

Beatrice Go
PSC chairman Ramirez: 2019 SEA Games to push through
'It’s of national interest to proceed with the November 30 Southeast Asian Games,' says PSC chairman Butch Ramirez

MANILA, Philippines –  Amid all the bumps leading to the country’s hosting of the 2019 Southeast Asian (SEA) Games, Philippine Sports Commission (PSC) chairman William “Butch” Ramirez said the regional sporting event will push through on November 30. 

“I would like to inform the Southeast Asian Federation and all our Filipino people and the Filipino sporting world that the order of the President no matter what, it’s of national interest to proceed with the November 30 Southeast Asian Games,” said Ramirez in a press conference on Thursday, June 20. 

Ramirez, who was also recently appointed as Team Philippines chef de mission to the 2019 SEA Games, was instructed by President Rodrigo Duterte to keep the athletes focused on their preparations for the biennial meet. 

The PSC chairmain revealed that Duterte is well aware of the Philippine Olympic Committee’s (POC) leadership struggles that can pose a great threat to the country’s hosting of the Games, which is just 4 months away. (TIMELINE: Will the POC feud affect PH’s SEA Games hosting?)

“He (Duterte) insisted that we expend our energies towards our athletes’ preparation for the Games, and that the issues of the Philippine Olympic Committee to be solved within their ranks,” added Ramirez. 

Last Tuesday, June 18, Ricky Vargas surprisingly resigned as POC president, which prompted first vice president Joey Romasanta to take over the post. 

However, POC chairman Abraham “Bambol” Tolentino intends to call for a special election, noting that Romasanta is not qualifed to serve as president. 

Despite the POC drama, Ramirez said the PSC continues to discuss with the national sports associations (NSA) their SEA Games preparations. 

According to Ramirez, several NSAs have already submitted their final list of delegates before the July 30 deadline. 

“There are already 10 NSAs that submitted their final listings for the SEA Games. This is a very good sign,” he said. 

Each PSC commissioner is also assigned to a sport to oversee the national and foreign tranings of the athletes. 

However, Ramirez is still ironing out several concerns, including venue changes as some sports have been relocated to Manila from Clark; and the issuance of a technical handbook of the SEA Games organizing committee. –



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Beatrice Go

More commonly known as Bee, Beatrice Go is a multimedia sports reporter for Rappler, who covers Philippine sports governance, national teams, football, and the UAAP. Stay tuned for her news and features on Philippine sports and videos like the Rappler Athlete’s Corner and Rappler Sports Timeout.