Mitra highlights GAB’s “historic” achievements during sports summit
CEBU CITY, Philippines — The Games and Amusements Board (GAB) Chairman, Abraham “Baham” Mitra highlighted the agency’s ‘historic’ achievements under his leadership during the 3rd Professional Sports Summit on Wednesday, Sept. 29, held on a virtual platform.
In his speech during the opening ceremonies, Mitra said that they have achieved several milestones in different sports.
He pointed out the eSports, volleyball, football, and chess for turning professional which provided welfare, livelihood, and safety to their respective athletes.
“GAB achieved many milestones and history. Esports is now part of GAB family. We had initial talks with them. I’m proud of them for having the biggest group that GAB is taking care of. 400 plus licensees maraming kabataan ang matutulungan ng esports,” said Mitra.
“There was also a history in PVL for turning professional. It re-energized the sport of volleyball in the country. It’s the first time to happen during the term of President Duterte that volleyball turned professional. Also, football turned professional several years ago.”
During the pandemic, Mitra also welcomed the vibrant chess scene in the country for turning professional under the Professional Chess Association of the Philippines (PCAP) that was established in the middle of the pandemic in 2020.
Also, he thanked the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) for partnering with them in conceptualizing the Special Guest License (SGL) to let collegiate basketball players compete in the pro leagues.
Another historic feat that GAB achieved according to Mitra was the free medical examination and other medical services for the professional combat athletes in the country.
“As we approach our last year in GAB, few more months to go, we would like to thank our stakeholders, to those who will be presenting now, for being here despite the challenges and expenses to promote sports during the pandemic,” said Mitra.
“We thank our stakeholders for fighting with us just to keep professional sports afloat. How can we imagine playing professional basketball, football, volleyball with no audience, this is what is happening now.
“The revenue is of course the attendance in the venue. There is none now, the expense is much more, my heart goes out for them for pushing really hard for the resumption of professional sports.”
The summit featured different sports personalities who share their ups and downs during the pandemic.
Also, senators Pia Cayetano, Bong Go, and Joel Villanueva, together with Congressman Jericho Nograles, and DOH Asec and Infectious Disease Specialist Dr. Eric Tayag attended the sports summit. /rcg
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