CBSAA Trailblazers cry foul over Cesafi expulsion
CEBU CITY, Philippines— City of Bogo Mayor Carlo Jose Martinez, who serves as the team manager of the City of Bogo Science and Arts Academy, or CBSAA Trailblazers, has accepted their fate of being expelled from Cesafi but cried foul over some inconsistencies in Commissioner Felix Tiukinhoy’s decision.
Martinez stated in his signed statement released on Thursday, November 30, that Tiukinhoy’s decision to terminate CBSAA was a ‘whimsical’ one and ‘lacked due process.’
On Wednesday, Cesafi Commissioner Felix Tiukinhoy signed a written statement announcing the termination of CBSAA Trailblazers’ participation in the league after being embroiled in several controversies during their two-year tenure as a guest team.
In Tiukinhoy’s statement, CBSAA’s participation was to honor the request of the league’s long-time supporter and former Bogo City Mayor Celestino ‘Junie’ Martinez Jr., who passed away last June.
However, due to the controversies surrounding the northern Cebu team, Tiukinhoy, along with the Cesafi board members and sponsors, ultimately decided to end CBSAA’s participation in the league for various reasons.
In his statement, Martinez, the son of Junie, expressed that joining Cesafi was supposed to be an opportunity for their young student-athletes to learn and showcase their basketball skills. It was also a chance for them to rectify their mistakes and improve in the future.
He added that they had complied with all of Cesafi’s sanctions for their team after being involved in several controversies, including multiple suspensions and fines resulting from on-court scuffles with their rivals, the Sacred Heart School-Ateneo de Cebu, on several occasions.
In addition to the lack of due process, Martinez also pointed out the social media attacks that stereotyped and discriminated against his team.
“We humbly accept your decision and this is to signify that we no longer have the intention of joining the next season considering the series of unfortunate events that our team has had to endure just to hurdle the discrimination and stereotypes brought about by massive social media attacks,” said Martinez in his statement.
“We supposed that joining Cesafi would be an opportunity for our young athletes not only to learn the skills of basketball but also to learn from their mistakes and correct themselves for the better. Despite the lack of due process, we have always complied with the decisions of the commissioner,” he further stated.
CBSAA’s head coach Leode Garcia was slapped with a full-season suspension, and their assistant coach, Denzel Sabroso, incurred a P10,000 fine and was required to perform four community service sessions due to his altercation with SHS-AdC’s assistant coach, Francis Aoquico.
Also, one of their players, Simon Maghinay, was removed from the line-up after pulling down the shorts and humiliating SHS-AdC’s Jim Valenzuela in the last seconds of their Cesafi high school finals in December 2022 at the Cebu Coliseum.
Despite Maghinay expressing remorse for his humiliating act in a live-streamed basketball game, the decision to remove him from the line-up was made.
In the current season, another CBSAA player, Franz Jeffrey Aballe, received a two-game suspension and a P10,000 fine for ‘causing physical harm’ to SHS-AdC’s Nikolas Yu.
Aballe was caught on video elbowing Yu’s head while the latter was on the floor. Following this incident, Cesafi officials issued a stern warning to CBSAA, stating that they would forfeit all remaining games if similar incidents occurred.
According to Martinez’s statement, Tiukinhoy demonstrated a lack of consistency and disparity in imposing sanctions on his team compared to other Cesafi member schools, leading them to feel ‘singled out.’
“As a guest team of Cesafi, we prepared and looked forward to the competition and the challenges our competitors would bring on the basketball court. However, the off-court antics and whimsical decisions of the commissioner have made it clear to us that we were not truly welcomed in this league,” Martinez further said in his statement.
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