PSC AND PCO: A STEP TOWARDS RECONCILIATION

Manila, June 29, 2003 (BULLETIN) By Nick Giongco - A BIG step towards reconciliation was made over the weekend when Philippine Olympic Committee (POC) president Celso Dayrit agreed to meet with Philippine Sports Commission (PSC) chairman Eric Buhain in a move aimed at putting an end to their week-long feud involving the selection of athletes to the 22nd Southeast Asian Games in Vietnam.

The date and venue have yet to be agreed upon although Dayrit told the Bulletin that he is willing to meet Buhain.

“I have always opened communication lines with him,” said Dayrit.

“But if he wants to attend the July 2 meeting of the POC, he is very much welcome,” said Dayrit, who also sent a letter to President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo, thanking her for her support to the delegation that will be sent to the December 5 to 13 games in Hanoi.

“The POC and the NSAs are ready to coordinate with the PSC. We should focus our program towards one direction which is to prepare our athletes,” Dayrit told the Chief Executive in his letter.

Buhain, however, still insists that the agency would only fund deserving athletes to the biennial event.

The PSC had earlier set a criteria that says only those who were at least silver medal winners in the SEAG, or bronze medal winners in the Asiad, would be given slots to Vietnam.

Buhain added that the list to be submitted by the POC would be sent to Malacañang for the President to see and size up.

On Friday, Frank Elizalde, the official representative of the International Olympic Committee to the Philippines, threw his support to Dayrit when he sent a letter to Buhain advising him to respect the parameters of the POC.


Reported by: Sol Jose Vanzi

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