We were left behind --- Romasanta
ABS-CBN Sports on Jun 14, 2015 06:28 PM
Hopefully the next administration will have a better view of (Philippine) sports -- POC second vice president Joey Romasanta
SINGAPORE --- Philippine Olympic Committee (POC) second vice president Joey Romasanta could get himself in hot waters after his scathing statements regarding Malacanang’s lack of support for national atheletes.
Speaking to a group of reporters Sunday, the Larong Volleyball ng Pilipinas, Inc. head said that the cold treatment of the administration of President Noynoy Aquino to the sports program of the country are partly to blame in the sudden dip of athletes’ performance in major international events most specially to those seeing action in the Southeast Asian Games here.
“Hopefully the next administration will have a better view of (Philippine) sports,” said Romasanta, moments after the men’s volleyball team crashed out of the medal race.
“Kasi yung Philippine Sports Commission they’re doing it on their own but in terms of the total support, kumbaga, parang naiwan mag-isa yung PSC e,” he added.
“But what is very glaring even in terms of non-material support is the fact that the Philippine sports delegation going into the SEA Games and the Asian Games, not one were received by the Palace. Even for the sendoff and even for comeback unlike the time of (President) Cory Aquino,” said Romasanta, who served as chief of Project: Gintong Alay during the administration of former President Corazon Aquino.
President Noynoy Aquino has yet to personally speak before national athletes since his election in 2010. The most he did was to send former Energy Sec. Jose Rene Almendras to send-off the athletes to the Asian Games in Incheon, South Korea last year.
Aquino, however, opened the doors of the Palace for the members of the Ateneo de Manila University and De La Salle University volleyball teams, who figured in a finals showdown in the University Athletics Association of the Philippines.
He even told them that: "I wish politicians, as well as member of other sectors of society, will also show the same cooperation. If they experience a rivalry or competition, I hope they ask themselves: Is this rivalry healthy? And in criticism, may they ask: Is this constructive?”
Malacanang also issued a statement after Team Philippines bagged its first gold medal in this year's biennial meet courtesy of triathlete Claire Adorna.
Other than that, the administration doesn't dip its fingers on pressing matters concerning Philippine sports.
President Aquino is the nephew of POC president Jose "Peping" Cojuangco. But Cojuangco is reportedly not in good terms with the Chief Executive to the point of spearheading the call for his resignation due to various national issues like the Development Acceleration Program and the Mamasapano encounter where 44 Special Action Force members were killed in a bloody firefight.
Giving a send-off party or a heroes' welcome is not unusual for a Chief Executive.
It has been a habit of former President Aquino to welcome the athletes whenever they came from an international competition. At one instance, she chided Romasanta for branding the country's 59-gold medal finish in the 14th SEA Games in 1987 in Jakarta as a "modest performance."
"It was our best finish in the SEA Games kaya pinagalitan nya ako in front of everybody for using the word modest," said Romasanta while recalling the involvement of his former boss in Philippine sports. "Presdient Cory always receives the Philippine delegation for send-off purposes and even after they come back from the competition."
Romasanta added that they are looking forward to an administration that will embrace Philippine sports, especially with the country possibly hosting the 30th SEA Games in 2019.