Press Release
November 22, 2021

Senator Pia Cayetano's motion to recall the budget of the Philippine Sports Commission (PSC)

Note: Sen. Cayetano's motion was approved by the Senate

Just a manifestation on the budget of the Philippine Sports Commission. I am asking that it be withdrawn or recalled, reconsidered. I've mentioned this to our Chairman of the Committee on Finance in passing. I don't know kung nagugulat pa ang Vice Chair in hearing it. This is because of the case of our Olympian, EJ Obiena, who has brought much pride and glory to this country. And recently, it was in the news that PATAFA made very public accusations against him, asking him to return something like P5M, which was supposed to be paid to his coach. But EJ Obiena had a presscon yesterday with his coach by his side, and his coach said that he paid that amount. So ang sa akin lang po, this is a young man with a beautiful career ahead of him. Anyone who has ever tried to participate in sports can just imagine the emotional and mental anguish that this young boy is going through because of these accusations of PATAFA, where the coach himself is saying binayaran naman siya.

Now the reason I am asking for the recall of the budget of PSC is because PSC took a hands-off approach. Sabi lang nila, "Work it out." How can you do that to your national athlete? Work it out? Pakialaman mo naman. Bigyan mo naman ng halaga ang ating national athlete na inakusahan na lang ng ganun ganun na lang. Wala pang basis, because no less than the coach said that he has been paid. So I will not take more time, I am just laying the basis for my motion to recall the budget of PSC, your honor.

[Sen Zubiri interjects]

Mr. President, I do appreciate his honor's intervention. We know how active he is with his NSA, Arnis. But for the record, under Republic Act. 6847 otherwise known as the Philippine Sports Commission Act, PSC is mandated to establish and maintain linkages with, among others, national sports organizations. Next, PSC has the power to exercise supervisory and visitorial powers over the national sports associations (NSA) in connection with their sports promotion, among others. So it's very clear, Mr. President. And this is our national athlete, and they receive funding from us. So yun lang, Mr. President. They receive funding from us. Kung sasabihin natin sa PSC na, "Huwag mo bigyan ang PATAFA dahil inaapi ang athletes." Ilan ang athlete ng PATAFA na naparating na nila sa Olympics? I think it's just EJ Obiena. So don't you think this guy at least deserves to be treated with respect? There's nothing that can be done to take away the shame and the embarrassment and the stress that was put upon this athlete as he is training right now and having to deal with all this. That's all I am saying, your honor.

[Sen. Gordon; Sen. Villanueva express support to Sen. Cayetano]

Even in Southeast Asia, and even in Japan, China, wala silang pole vaulter.

[The budget of the Philippine Sports Commission is reconsidered.]

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