Cebu City to cohost Phil National Games
AFTER nearly two decades, the Philippine National Games (PNG) will be returning to the Queen City of the South.
In an impromptu board meeting last Tuesday, the Philippine Sports Commission (PSC) chose Cebu City to cohost next year’s PNG with the Cebu province.
The PSC officials met in Manila last Tuesday after the cancellation of a Senate hearing that was supposed to look into the alleged unliquidated funds that the Philippine Olympic Committee (POC) got from the PSC.
Several topics were discussed until the PNG hosting was brought up.
“What sports and how many games will be allotted to the city and province will be subject for discussion. First, we’ll be sending communication to the mayor of Cebu City and governor of Cebu,” PSC Chairman William “Butch” Ramirez said.
PSC Commissioner Ramon Fernandez, who is based in Cebu, will be presiding over the discussion with the technical working group, Marc Velasco, national training director of the Philippine Sports Institute, and PSC acting executive director Ronnel Abrenica.
“The POC will also be part of the discussion because they are part of the collaboration. As to matters of finances, the PSC will take care of that, but the budget for the hosting will be up to the local organizing committee,” said Ramirez.
Awarding the PNG hosting to the province and the city is a welcome development, said lawyer Ramil Abing, executive director of the Cebu Provincial Sports Commission (CPSC).
“For one, we will have homecourt (sic) advantage, and I’m sure there will be several athletes who will participate coming from Cebu. Secondly, I think we can save on cost and hassle of sending athletes to other parts of the country. Also, this will further promote Cebu as a sports destination,” Abing said in a text message to Cebu Daily News.
CDN tried to reach Cebu City Sports Commission chairman Edward Hayco for his comment, but he was out of the country when contacted.
The first and only time that Cebu City hosted the PNG was in 1997. The multi-sporting event was first staged in 1994 in Manila, which also hosted the second edition in 1996.
After Cebu’s hosting, the event was scrapped due to lack of funds. PNG returned in 2011 in Bacolod and became an annual event since then. Last year’s edition was held in Pangasinan.
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