The new regime of the Philippine Sports Commissioner (PSC) headed by returning chairman William “Butch” Ramirez and commissioner Ramon “El Presidente” Fernandez pledged to give their “heart and soul” to the Filipino athletes as they aspire to turn the much-maligned organization around.
“Our heart and soul is with the athlete. This is the direction of the PSC,” Ramirez boldly said in a talk with Cebuano sports scribes. Flanked by Fernandez, the famous PBA legend turned PSC commissioner Ramirez outlined his initial plans for the organization starting with strengthening it from within.
“We have to fix and strengthen the PSC in the areas of what are the code of ethics of the organization when it was created in 1990. Why hasn’t it matured, and we’ll look into that. What is it’s mandate and has it been realized?” said Ramirez over a plateful of breakfast.
“Second, how efficient are PSC employees. Are we efficient in our service to both elite athletes and those in grassroots sports. And third, the quality assurance of our institution. Can we assure our clients that our facilities are safe and secure? These are questions that I’ve been asking in my return to the PSC.”
Ramirez was appointed as PSC chairman under the administration of former president, Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo and served from 2005 until 2009.
However, his post-PSC life was rocked by several graft cases filed by the Office of the Ombudsman against him in connection with the anomalous release of 37 million pesos in financial assistance supposedly for the swimmers who competed in the 2012 Summer Olympics.
In lieu of that, Ramirez is hoping to make changes to the procurement process of his office.
“Our plan for the office is sa bidding pa lang, we’ll put representatives from the employees and the media. We’ll also apply the same in our board meetings. Sundin lang natin si President (Rodrigo) Duterte and where he wants to take us. Ayaw niya sa graft and corruption and he wants change for good,” shared Ramirez.
“Even though we haven’t won a gold yet at the Olympics, although that’s important to us, what’s more important is the values and the character of the office. Winning a medal at the greatest show on earth is just a bonus. Have we been able to make an impact in sports at the different towns of the country? These are questions that we need to tackle. I will not hesitate to lose my job by the end of the year if we manage to set things straight in our country’s sporting landscape. I really don’t care how long we stay in our positions. If we can’t do what we’re supposed to, then we don’t have to be there.”
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