Philippine Sports Commission (PSC) will not provide financial assistance (FA) to national sports associations (NSAs) that have yet to liquidate assets, and will instead send it to athletes and coaches directly.
This comes in the wake of a recent Commission on Audit (COA) finding that P256,968,475.84 of the P305,117,477.56 the agency released to 51 NSAs remains unliquidated by 49 NSAs as of July 31, 2020.
The same COA report detailed that a total of P2.7-billion given by the PSC to the Philippine SEA Games Organizing Committee and the Philippine Olympic Committee for the 2019 SEA Games remains unaccounted for.
“Because of that, starting January – first day of January – we will not anymore give financial assistance to NSAs that have still unliquidated portions on financial assistance,” PSC Commissioner Ramon Fernandez told Power And Play, hosted by Noli Eala.
“We have written them regarding that, that we will not fund the NSAs muna until everything is liquidated. But, para ‘wag naman maantala ‘yung preparation natin sa mga atleta for the international games this coming year, ang gagawin ng PSC, na-decide namin na we will directly give the financial assistance to the athletes and coaches,” the most decorated player in PBA history continued.
“Magpapadala na lang kami ng special disbursing officers para madali na ‘yung liquidation, ma-liquidate ‘yung money na ginamit for the training and the like. We find ways because ang maaapektuhan kasi ang kawawa mga atleta. So we don’t want to do that.”
Demand letters have actually been sent to those NSAs but the majority of them, per the CoA report, cited difficulties in complying with the requirements due to lockdown measures. Eighteen NSAs, meanwhile, did not reply.
Fernandez, appointed as one of four PSC commissioners in 2016, understands that the NSAs aim to be independent and autonomous. But he calls on them to be as transparent as they can be with their funds.
“We’ve been writing, we’ve been asking the NSAs to be transparent. They want independence, yes, we can give them independence, but you have to be transparent,” he said.
And as part of the transparency the PSC is hoping to see, the 67-year-old added that the NSAs should also report exactly how much they are receiving from sponsors from the private sector.
“They must also tell us how much they are getting from the sponsors from the private sector. There should be a clear cut, transparent liquidation of the total funds that the NSAs are getting,” he said.
“That’s precisely why they were asked to register in the Securities and Exchange Commission so that every year they can submit their annual financial statements. And it’s all stated there, hindi lang ‘yung nakukuha sa PSC, but also from the private sector – sino ba ‘yung mga kumpanya na nagbibigay? Para cuentas claras, transparent tayo lahat – magkano ang ginagastos niyo, saan ginagastos ‘yan coming from the private and from PSC,” he continued.
“Gusto nila may economy sila, fine. If they want to be autonomous, hindi kami makikialam. But we have to be transparent also. Right? It’s just being fair.”