Support athletes during pandemic – Bong Go

SEN. Christopher Lawrence “Bong” Go has appealed to the Philippine Sports Commission (PSC) to continue to protect the welfare of athletes, especially the physical and mental condition of the national teams, amid the pandemic.

“I appeal to the leadership of the Philippine Sports Commission and other agencies of government to continue supporting our national teams, especially the athletes,” Go, chairman of the Senate sports committee, said in Filipino.

“Our athletes bring honor to our country through their skills and talents. Now, let’s show our wholehearted support to them not only during their games but also during the time of their needs,” he added.

Most athletes, especially those engaged in contact sports, have not been able to train and compete because of the health crisis.

“Most of our athletes now can not train and they’re hard up in life. Since there’s no competition, their livelihood is also affected and the allowances they’re receiving as well,” Go said.

The PSC recently gave the regular allowance of around 1,000 athletes and coaches despite its “No training, no allowance” policy. The commission also provided housing and food to stranded national team members in Metro Manila. It has also been monitoring the health status of its athletes through online medical consultations and psychological sessions.

The PSC said qualified athletes and coaches would receive their allowances. But the amounts will be cut by half starting July.

Go urged the committee to do all it can to support athletes.

“As chairman of the Senate Committee on Sports, I am calling on the PSC to do everything in order to provide the support needed by the athletes. They should also study the possibility of having a retroactive restoration of their whole allowances once the Philippine
Amusement and Gaming Corp. (Pagcor) has recovered in its remittances,” the senator said.

The allowances of athletes are taken from a percentage of the remittances of Pagcor.

Go also urged the government to provide other forms of assistance to athletes and coaches especially those who are preparing for international competitions.

“To our concerned government agencies, such as PSC and GAB (Games and Amusement Board), please continue to monitor and support the welfare of athletes through other innovative means especially in conducting online training and by providing guidelines for other sports competitions to resume activities in a safe manner and in compliance with health protocols,” he said.

Date: June 11, 2020 | Newspaper: Manila Times | Source: