Palarong Pambansa 2024

IN CHARTS: Which region has dominated Palarong Pambansa through the years?

James Patrick Cruz

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IN CHARTS: Which region has dominated Palarong Pambansa through the years?

Raffy De Guzman/Rappler

Palarong Pambansa stands as a symbol of regional pride and competitive spirit. Which region will dominate the 2024 national games?

MANILA, Philippines – The Palarong Pambansa, the premier youth sports event in the Philippines, gathers elementary and high school athletes from all over the country annually.

The Palaro also stands as a symbol of regional pride and competitive spirit.

As the 2024 edition of the national games kicks off in Cebu City, Rappler has created a chart to highlight which region has dominated the Palarong Pambansa based on the number of medals they’ve accumulated through the years.

Due to the unavailability of historical data, this chart only covers data from 2008 to 2019 and 2023. The games were halted from 2020 to 2022 due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

The National Capital Region (NCR) has long dominated the Palarong Pambansa, as data from 2013 to 2023 has shown. In the 2023 edition of the national games held in Marikina, NCR secured 85 gold, 74 silver, and 55 bronze medals.

From 2008 to 2013, Western Visayas consistently placed second. However, in 2014, Calabarzon has taken over the second spot, maintaining this position until the 2019 games. Western Visayas reclaimed the second spot in 2023.

Reviewing historical data also reveals Central Luzon‘s upward trajectory in terms of performance. It placed 10th in 2017, climbed to 8th in 2018, achieved 6th in 2019, and secured 4th place in 2023.

In 2016, Negros Island Region Athletics Association (NIRAA) made its debut in Palarong Pambansa finishing 6th. This comes after former President Benigno “Noynoy” Aquino III signed an executive order creating the Negros Island Region.

NIRAA participated until 2017 when it placed 4th. Its participation in the Palarong Pambansa was halted after then-President Rodrigo Duterte, revoked Aquino’s executive order citing a lack of funds.

On June 13, the Negros Island Region was finally institutionalized after President Ferdinand Marcos Jr. signed Republic Act No. 12000. For the 2024 edition of the games, however, the participants from Negros Island would still compete under Western Visayas.

For years, NCR has been a powerhouse in the Palarong Pambansa. Will a new contender rise to dethrone the capital region from the top spot?

Follow Rappler’s Palarong Pambansa coverage to see who will emerge victorious in this year’s competition. –

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James Patrick Cruz

Patrick Cruz is a researcher and writer for Rappler’s governance cluster. Before transferring to Rappler's Research team, he covered local governments focusing on Metro Manila.