Proposed ‘Sports Bubble Ordinance’ draws mixed reactions
CEBU CITY, Philippines –The “Cebu City Sports Bubble Ordinance” proposed by sportsman and Cebu City Councilor Dondon Hontiveros drew mixed reactions from the Cebuano sports community.
Earlier this week, Hontiveros filed a resolution during the regular session of the Cebu City Council regarding the need to revive sports within Cebu City in a bubble environment. Hontiveros is also the league ambassador of the upcoming Pilipinas VisMin Super League slated on April 9 in Alcantara town, southwest Cebu.
The proposed resolution aims to allow professional level sports leagues or competitions within Cebu City’s jurisdiction. It will be under the Inter-Agency Task Force (IATF) and the Games and Amusement Board (GAB) minimum public health standards that will be held in a bubble environment.
However, Ricky Ballesteros, Milo Little Olympics and Milo Marathon organizer, has some concerns regarding the resolution.
“We have to be extra careful this time in planning and executing sports events or any events for that matter,” Ballesteros told CDN Digital. “As they say, carefulness costs you nothing, carelessness may cost you your life.”
For Ballesteros, they must prioritize the athletes’ safety, considering that Cebu City’s COVID-19 cases continue to rise.
“If they push through with the bubble setup, they must concentrate first with the national team athletes that will be competing internationally. They must make sure to provide safe and comfortable accommodations with health and safety protocols strictly followed,” Ballesteros said.
Ballesteros added that COVID-19 was here to stay with or without vaccines, and this was the new normal.
“As a sports event organizer, we must be creative. We must plan ahead; we just have to make adjustments to meet its unique needs and circumstances in this current situation we are in now during a pandemic. You have to place safety and security first and foremost, and always consult to authorities like IATF and DOH,” said Ballesteros.
The ordinance is limited only to all professional sports. All non-professional and amateur level sports events are excluded.
For Arvin Loberanis, University of San Carlos-Basic Education (USC-BED) track and field head coach, he finds the resolution unfair.
“Unfair kaayo namo nga naa sa amateur level. Dapat fair unta kay kung concerned sila sa virus, wala man gipili nga edad ang virus. So dapat apil unta tanan level as long as properly monitored lang gyud unya mo follow lang jud sa safety protocols,” Loberanis said.
(This is unfair to us in the amateur level. They should be fair because the virus does not choose any age to infect if they are concerned about the virus. So all levels should be included as long as they are properly monitored and they follow safety protocols.)
Loberanis said that he and his team hoped that someone influential in the local sports community could voice out their sentiments.
He said that he and his athletes had not trained since March last year.
“Kung walay tawo nga mangusog ani, wala jud ni pag-asa makabalik pa mi og train or compete,” Loberanis added.
(If nobody will have the courage to push for this, then we will not have a chance to return to train or compete.)
Currently, Loberanis has not received any directive from USC-BED’s higher-ups to resume their training. He and his athletes do their training routines virtually at the comfort of their homes./dbs
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