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DUMAGUETE CITY - Around 3,500 participants from 53 local government units paraded last Friday, November 10 at the Lamberto Macias Sports and Cultural Center here for the opening ceremonies of the Philippine Sports Commission’s Batang Pinoy Visayas leg.

City Mayor Felipe “Ipe” Remollo welcomed participants and guests expressing his pleasure that they were given hosting privileges for the leg. “Welcome to the City of gentle people,” the mayor said referring to their city’s moniker.

Remollo is instrumental in bringing this leg to fruition as the city provided billeting of all delegations in schools as well as volunteers and staff for different functional areas of operations.

PSC Commissioner Celia Kiram delivered the inspirational message on behalf of PSC Chairman William Ramirez who was called to an emergency meeting on the Marawi rehabilitation. During her speech, Comm. Kiram cited the importance of the Batang Pinoy in the government’s thrust towards strethening sports at the grassroots level. Kiram said that “the board is one in its dream to establish a solid youth sports program. This is why we are now talking with the Department of Education, the Commission on Higher Education and the Department of Interior and Local Government for partnerships.”

Cebu City fielded the biggest delegation with 309 total delegates.

Competitions in 19 sports will be held from November 11 to 16 in venues across the city.