Cayetano seeks probe on PHL team’s poor performance in SEA Games

November 23, 2011 10:47 pm 

MANILA, Nov. 23 -– Another senator has expressed desire to call for an investigation into the poor sixth place performance of the Philippine team in the recently-concluded 26th Southeast Asian Games in Indonesia.

”I can call for an investigation which I will do. But at the end of the day, I really would like to call upon our President to see the value of sports,” Senator Pia Cayetano, herself a sports enthusiast, said in a media interview on Wednesday.

The Philippines failed to achieve its 70 gold medals prediction, bringing home only 36 gold, 56 silver and 77 bronze medals while relinquishing its fifth place finish two years ago in Laos to swimming king Singapore, which had 42-45-73, 18 gold medals coming from the pool.

”I call upon the President to help and to intervene on this issue. Of course I’ll back him up all the way. On top of other problems the President has, sports is a good thing that the President should get his hands into,” Cayetano said.

The lady senator lambasted the Philippines Sports Commission (PSC) and the Philippine Olympic Committee (POC) for their failure to give the best preparation for the Filipino athletes despite financial support, including P30 million for participation alone provided by the government.

”I have to say they [POC and PSC] don’t have what it takes if this [6th place finish] is what we have to show. Our athletes are good, there’s no doubt about that. The problem is how to convert that into gold performance,” Cayetano said.

Earlier, Senator Antonio Trillanes IV has said he has invited top officials of the PSC, POC and heads of national sports associations to a Senate hearing tentatively set on December to shed light on the worst finish of the Team Philippines.

“It’s a call for sports leaders to explain their flawed sports program. The very dismal finish in the SEA Games is the ultimate manifestation of our (PHL sports’) sad state,” Trillanes said in inquirer website report.

Trillanes has been recently elected as president of the Table Tennis Association of the Philippines (TATAP).

While Cayetano and Trillanes expressed dissatisfaction over the country’s performance in the SEA Games, Senator Lito Lapid has filed a resolution commending the Filipino medalists.

”By harvesting medals in this international sports meet, the Philippine contingent has made our country proud and has shown to the world the spirit of Filipino camaraderie and sportsmanship,” Lapid said.

The Senate has yet to adopt the resolution entered as Senate Resolution No. 649.

The biennial meet has been participated by 11 countries with host Indonesia bringing home overall championship with 182 gold, 151 silver and 152 bronze medals; followed by Thailand (75-100-120), Vietnam (96-90-100), Malaysia (59-50-81), Singapore (42-45-73), Philippines (36-56-77), Myanmar (16-27-36), Laos (9-12-36), Cambodia (4-11-24), Timor Leste (1-1-6) and Brunei Darussalam (0-4-7). (PNA) RMA/DCT/jfm

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