MINDANAO GAMES TO HIGHLIGHT PEACE, STABILITY

MANILA, OCTOBER 16, 2003 (STAR) The third Mindanao Games scheduled from Oct. 19-24 in Mati, Davao Oriental will be an ideal vehicle in projecting an image of peace and stability on top of promoting greater understanding among the people in the region, according to the organizing Philippine Sports Commission.

"The Mindanao Games is envisioned to eliminate the negative perception about the region, which is part of President Arroyo’s thrust to effect peace and development in Mindanao," said PSC chairman Eric Buhain.

"This event is not about swimming nor about martial arts or even basketball. It is more about the people of Mindanao, the Muslims, Christians and the Lumads, competing together for a cause, which is peace and development," Buhain added.

PSC commissioner Leon Montemayor, the overall project director and a native of Davao City said, "through this event, we can truly show that Mindanaoans are generally a peaceful and understanding people who can work together in achieving success and development for our region."

The best athletes in Mindanao are also expected to see action in the multi-sport open event competition in Mati as host Mayor Francisco Rabat, Congressman Mayo Almario of Mati and Gov. Elena Palma Gil of Davao Oriental assured the PSC that both town and province are fully prepared as all necessary preparations are now in place when the Games open at the Mati Centennial Sports Complex.

The MG secretariat, earlier, has processed and confirmed the participation of more than 41 local government units reflecting a possible participation rate of about 4,000 athletes and delegation members representing the six regions in Mindanao in the MG, which is backed by San Miguel Corp., PCSO, Baygon, Philcom, Burlington, Bachelor Express, Air Philippines, WG&A Super Ferry, Systems Technology Information and Samsung.


Reported by: Sol Jose Vanzi

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