Ex-PDEA regional chief vows city-wide sports program in Cebu City mayoral bid
CEBU CITY, Philippines— Former Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency-Central Visayas (PDEA-7) regional director Yogi Felimon Ruiz eyes a comprehensive and city-wide sports program set this March.
As a political newcomer, Ruiz aims to run for mayor of Cebu City in the next year’s elections, intending to include his “sports for all” initiative to be part of his program if he wins.
In a press conference on Thursday evening, Ruiz, who is also the former Bureau of Customs (BOC) commissioner and head of the BOC-Enforcement and Security Services, revealed his sports program for Cebu City.
His sports program will be comprehensive, long-term, and similar to the Barangay-level sports program they conducted when he was PDEA’s regional chief.
“We have done this before, nag implement ta sa PDEA program. There was a component nga atong gipalig-on ang sports sa barangay. If our youth are into sports, they will only focus on improving themselves in their chosen sports; they won’t be distracted by vices such as drugs,” said Ruiz, who is from Barangay Mabolo, here.
“Sa sports, you are strengthening the person, you’re strengthening them not only physically, but also emotionally. In sports, there are losers and winners, but even if you lose, you have a mindset to never quit. We will be teaching them to never quit,” he added.
Ruiz aims to start his “sports for all” initiative in March, covering all 80 barangays in Cebu City.
“I’m planning to launch this in March. This program is in support of what I’ll be doing in the coming months. But my passion and advocacy in sports started many years back. As I’ve said, I’m a Balintawak arnis practitioner, and I’m a recreational boxer. So, I have seen effective and how vital sports is para sa dili lang sa kabataan but for everyone,” said Ruiz.
In case he is barred by the Cebu City government from organizing sports programs at the barangay level, Ruiz has an alternative option to hold them in private spaces.
“We have options for that; that’s the height of selfishness if you’re not allowing the activity to be held at the gym just for political purposes. But if that will be the case, many sitios have places and many ways to conduct sports there and private open spaces owned by private individuals who are willing to support us,” Ruiz explained.
In addition to the barangay level, Ruiz aims to involve the Department of Education (DepEd) to expand his “sports for all” advocacy. /clorenciana
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