Press Release
November 23, 2011

Sen Pia S. Cayetano on PH's 6th place finish at
the 26th SEA Games Transcript of ambush interview

Q: Mam ano po ang dapat nating gawin para maibalik ang ningning ng Philippine sports?

SPSC: I'm not an administrator when it comes to sports, in management of sports, but as an athlete, as a Filipino, as a supporter, you know there's something wrong, di ba? Kung dati nakaka-puwesto tayo ng first, second or kung 'di man ay third, I can't understand bakit ngayon sixth place na tayo and I think, 3rd place ang Vietnam. And saan ba nanggaling ang Vietnam? Lately lang sila nabuhusan ng support. All I am saying is, we position ourselves, we act as if magaling tayo, and I know for a fact na magaling ang athletes natin. So how come hindi yan ma-translate into podium finishes? That is a serious problem which I really hope that this administration prioritizes. Because look at the joy a Manny Pacquiao win does for our country? We are overjoyed, kumbaga, daig pa nyan ang lahat ng hiling for ceasefire, daig pa ang crime-fighting efforts, sabi nga, the crime rate goes down when there's a Manny Pacquiao fight. We can multiply this ten times, even a hundred times over, if we can really elevate the playing level of our athletes.

Ako pwede naman akong manawagan ng hearing, which I will do. But at the end of the day, I really would like to call upon our President na sana makita nya ang value ng sports. It takes kids out of the streets; it takes them away from drugs; it gives them a very positive self-image; it gives them a sense of accomplishment; it teaches them the value of hard work. I cannot think of anything simpler for our youth--other than mag-aral--than getting them into sports .

So I really think that between the Office of the President, DepEd, TESDA, and the LGUs, they put their heads together and really, once and for all, figure out what to do because clearly, PSC [Philippine Sports Commission] and POC [Philippine Olympic Committee] do not have what it takes.

Q: Sumakit na mga ulo nyo sa katatawag ng hearing dito no [poor performance and controversies involving our athletes]?

SPSC: 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. Kasi magagaling ang ating mga athletes. There's no doubt about that na kung hindi mo maco-convert. And I read on the papers na pati pala ang baseball nagkaroon ng ganun ding problema kagaya ng hinearing ko noon sa cycling team, dragon boat...

Q: Lahat na ng ports na hearing nyo na...

SPSC: Hindi pa naman lahat. Wag naman sana. So yun, 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.

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