Press Release
December 9, 2013

Sen. Pia throws support for PH athletes in SEA Games;
slams PH sports officials

Senator Pia S. Cayetano today expressed praise and threw her support behind the 210 Filipino athletes competing at the 27th Southeast Asian (SEA) Games, which will officially kick off in Myanmar on Wednesday, December 11.

At the same time, the senator lashed out at national sports officials for their mishandling of the country's sports program and for allowing politics to ruin the participation of several top-notch athletes who would have brought home medals for the country.

"I wish all our athletes competing in the 27th SEA Games the best of luck. I know that they will do their best and vie for the gold to bring honor to our country and people," said Cayetano, a sports enthusiast and former national volleyball player.

"What we lack in funding, modern training facilities and, sad to say, competent and forward-thinking sports officials, our athletes make up for with their courage, skills and commitment to fight for our flag," she added.

"In contrast, I cannot hide my disgust with the leadership of the Philippine Sports Commission (PSC) and the Philippine Olympic Committee (POC) for their gross mishandling of our athletes and sports program. This includes the selection process for the national lineup, which was hobbled with questions and controversy."

"I mourn the wasted talents of some of our outstanding athletes who will not be suiting up for the SEA Games due to the short-sightedness of the PSC and POC," added the senator.

"Athletes who were excluded from the national team, like the Philippine Dragon Boat Team who are world champions, and young swimmer Denjylie Cordero, who recently broke a decade-old national record, were victims of politicking by sports officials whose actions are condoned instead of being sanctioned by the PSC and POC."

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