The year 2020 has seen everyone suffer — including our national athletes.
But with big sporting events coming in 2021, Rep. Bambol Tolentino promises more funding for national team athletes, coursed through the Philippine Sports Commission.
“Wala silang nilagay for our big competition next year. As in zero. Dun lang sila aasa sa bibigay ng PAGCOR, eh tinamaan na nga sila ng COVID. Hindi na nga full noon, paano pa ngayon?” wondered Tolentino, who is seeking a fresh and full-term as Philippine Olympic Committee president, during the PSA Forum.
2021 is stacked with events after a down year.
Besides the Tokyo Olympics, there is also the the Asian Indoor and Martial Arts Games from May 21 to 30 in Bangkok, Thailand; and the 31st Southeast Asian Games from November 21 to December 2 in Hanoi, Vietnam. Then there’s the 2021 Asian Youth Games in Shantou, China from November 20 to 28.
For him, having a well-funded national team and a united POC board is a must coming off a successful SEA Games hosting.
“Sa akin, sayang lang ‘yung momentum natin from the overall champions sa SEA Games. Nandoon pa ‘yung momentum for Tokyo, so we should focus on that.
“Pangit naman kung disorganized tayo heading to that. Then we have the AIMAG and SEA Games pa. Tapos may Asian Youth Games pa. Dapat dun tayo naka-focus. Of course, we will follow ang lahat ng agenda ng team natin like sustainability and ‘yung promise namin sa IOC to amend the constitution. ‘Pag matagal pa ginalaw ‘yan, sabihin self-serving tayo. Pinangako natin ‘yan eh, so it might be the first agenda,” said the representative from the eighth district of Cavite.
So how will Tolentino get the budget for this? Well, he is seeking more godfathers, more sponsors, and more backers for our athletes.
“At least 510-million ang pinakita sa akin ng PSC. That will cover all the events next year,” he told the weekly forum which is presented by San Miguel Corp., Go For Gold, MILO, Amelie Hotel Manila, Braska Restaurant, the Philippine Amusement and Gaming Corporation (PAGCOR), and powered by Smart, with Upstream Media as official webcast partner.