PBA CHAIR CABALAN CENSURES FEDEX TEAM OWNER LINA

MANILA, OCTOBER 9, 2003 (MALAYA) By NOLI CORTEZ  - Being the newest member of the PBA board doesn't make one immune to censure if he goes against league policies.

This, in effect, was what PBA chairman Jun Cabalan said yesterday in response to statements made by FedEx team owner Bert Lina last Tuesday that the league deemed inimical to its interests.

"May we remind Mr. Lina once again that pursuant to the rules of the PBA board and the gentleman's agreement among the governors, all statements relating to policies affecting the league must be aired through the appropriate venues provided by the PBA constitution and discussed first within the confines of the board room," Cabalan said in a prepared statement.

"Any diversion from said policy will only lead to misunderstanding and would be detrimental to the greater interest of the league."

Cabalan took exception to statements made by Lina in last Tuesday's PSA Forum regarding the issue of "Fil-Shams" which the newly-elected national cycling federation president said was directly responsible for the drastic dip in the PBA's live gate attendance.

"People feel cheated because of this Fil-sham thing" Lina was quoted as saying.

Lina is the Express' representative to the PBA board, a position he has held since his franchise was admitted to the league in December 2001.

"The statements are totally uncalled for. As an active, bona fide member of the PBA board, Mr. Lina should have known that the problems be-setting the league today, most especially the Fil-Am subject, have been and are being thoroughly discussed and acted upon by the entire board," said Cabalan.

"Mr. Lina, in fact, was present when the measures were adopted to address the matter. What prompted Mr. Lina to issue such statements... remains a mystery," Cabalan added.

Lina was not available for comment yesterday.

In the same forum, Lina also hinted that after five years, he may move his resources to other pursuits, like cycling.


Reported by: Sol Jose Vanzi

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