Suspended CIT-U coach appeals Cesafi ruling
CEBU CITY, Philippines—The camp of embattled basketball coach Edsel Vallena submitted an appeal to the Cebu Schools Athletic Foundation Inc. (Cesafi) to overturn the decision of its board to suspend him in the entire Cesafi Season 23 this September.
The appeal was submitted by Vallena’s lawyer, Khan Francis Guieb, on Wednesday, August 2, 2023. Guieb also forwarded a copy of the appeal to CDN Digital on the same day.
CIT-U coach appeals suspension
It can be recalled on Wednesday, the Cesafi board, through its ad hoc committee headed by its chairman, Lawyer Boyet Velez; and vice-chair, Lawyer Marven Panares concluded that Vallena committed his third offense against the Cesafi Ground Rules and Regulations, leading to his full season suspension.
However, Vallena and his legal counsel appealed to the Cesafi board addressed to its newly-inducted president, Lawyer Paulino Yabao, and to Cesafi Commissioner, Felix Tiukinhoy Jr.
Erroneous findings, conclusions
The appeal stated that the accusations and suspension of Vallena were based on “erroneous findings and conclusions” from the ad hoc committee.
“While as to other parties or players, the findings are specific as to who punched or attacked who, for Coach Edsel Vallena, it was not identified who Coach Vallena punched or attacked. The reason is that Coach Vallena could not have attacked anyone as it was impossible for him to retaliate,” a part of the appeal of the CIT-U coach stated.
The appeal was mainly based on the April 23, 2023 “Basketbrawl” that happened between his team, the CIT-U Wildcats, and the UC Webmasters in a Cesafi pre-season tournament in Moalboal town, southwest Cebu as it was the main basis for the ad hoc committee to suspend Vallena, including his previous violations and suspensions.
“As shown in the ‘Facebook video’, ‘police-CCTV’ and ‘police-video’, Coach Vallena was attacked and mauled by almost ten (10) people. How can he have attacked anyone with such number mauling him at the same time? Even Joseph Nalos, Sr., the identified father of Joseph Nalos, never accused Coach Vallena of punching anyone in his police blotter. A copy of the Police Report dated May 22, 2023 is attached hereto as Annex “B”. Thus, the inclusion of the name of Coach Vallena as one who has “caused physical harm to others” is erroneous, with all due respect. It is clearly without any basis,” Vallena said in his appeal.
Also, the appeal stated that the penalty imposed on Vallena ‘was made without any basis’ as he never attacked or punched anyone when the “Basketbrawl” happened.
Besides that, the appeal stated that the Ad Hoc committee based their findings on ‘biased allegations’ and didn’t base their decision on the pieces of evidence from the police report and CCTV footage during the incident.
For his part, Vallena told CDN Digital that he would not speak publicly about Cesafi’s decision to suspend him in the upcoming Season 23.
Instead, he will rely on the appeal submitted by his legal counsel to the Cesafi board and hopes that the latter will reconsider their decision.
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