MANILA – Members of House committee on youth and sports development on Wednesday lauded the Philippine Sports Commission (PSC) for rehabilitating the Rizal Memorial Sports Complex (RMSC), hoping the 84-year-old sports facilities will produce more new sports legends.
“It took us 80 plus years to see massive improvement and hopefully this would be the dawning of a new era in sports, the renaissance of the country as the powerhouse in sports,” Valenzuela City Rep.
Eric Martinez told the media after visiting the ongoing rehabilitation of the sports facilities inside the RMSC in Malate.
Martinez, chairman of the House committee on youth and sports development, hailed PSC chairman William “Butch” Ramirez for improving the sports facilities that will be used during the 30th Southeast Asian Games from Nov. 30 to Dec. 11 this year.
“Nandito po ako noong 1991 closing ceremony, malayong-malayo na (I was here during the 1991 SEA Games closing ceremony, there’s a big difference). This will be the most prepared in terms of facilities and icing on the cake will be the overall championship. Kaya tulong-tulong po tayo para sa ating mga atletang Pilipino (Let’s help each other for our athletes),” Martinez said.
Navotas City Rep. John Rey Tiangco, meanwhile, believed the newly-refurbished sports facilities would inspire the Filipino athletes to excel further in their respective field of sports.
“Natutuwa po tayo na nakikita nating world-class facilities itong pinapagawa natin. Aside from hosting, gusto nating manalo yung Pilipinas (I’m happy to see these world-class facilities being rehabilitated. Aside from hosting (SEA Games), we want the Philippines to win),” Tiangco said.
Rep. Strike Revilla of Bacoor City lauded the PSC for hurdling challenges to build world-class sports facilities.
“I would like to congratulate the PSC, nakakatuwa. Although nakikita natin na malaking challenge pa rin itong ginagawa natin ngayon, naniniwala naman ako na kakayanin natin ito (I’m happy. Although what we are doing is a challenge, I believe we can do it),” Revilla said.
Rep. Faustino Michael Carlos T. Dy III of the 5th district of Isabela also praised Ramirez for preserving the historic RMSC “for the future generation of athletes to inspire them to work harder and to aim for gold for our country”.
Jose Teves Jr., representative of the Talino at Galing ng Pinoy (TGP) party-list, thanked the PSC for using government funds for the construction and rehabilitation of the sports venues.
“This only shows the kind of good leader that we have. The funds that Congress gives to the PSC will not be wasted,” Teves said.
Ramirez welcomed the support of the House panel members for taking time to visit the ongoing rehabilitation of the RMSC.
“It’s a good sign that we really value this historical landmark of Philippine sports known as the Rizal Memorial Sports Complex. We welcome our Congressmen, this is your home,” Ramirez said.
The RMSC’s memorial coliseum will be the venue for gymnastics competition while the Ninoy Aquino Stadium will host weightlifting and taekwondo tournaments. The PSC also renovated the Football Stadium and the Tennis Center for SEA Games.
The Philippine Amusement and Gaming Corporation (Pagcor) has donated PHP840 million to renovate the RMSC facilities.
Aside from renovation of the facilities, the PSC has also allotted at least PHP1 billion for the refurbishment of the athletes’ dormitories and other sports venues both at the RMSC and PhilSports in Pasig City.
Meanwhile, Martinez urged members of the media to help President Rodrigo Duterte, the PSC and Congress to encourage the youth to go into sports.
“That’s the most important help we can do, awareness of the youth. There are more (Lydia) de Vega, (Elma) Muros, (Isidro) del Prado, Teofilo Yldefonso who are out there. We just have to give them opportunity,” he said. (PNA)