MANILA, Philippines – National sports associations (NSAs) preparing for this November’s Southeast Asian Games in Hanoi, Vietnam will have to set up their own training camp in areas with more lenient quarantine protocols.
SEA Games chef-de-mission Ramon Fernandez of the Philippine Sports Commission (PSC) yesterday said they can no longer hold a bubble training at the Rizal Memorial Sports Complex in Manila and PhilSports Complex in Pasig due to the recent spike of COVID-19 cases and extended enhanced community quarantine (ECQ).
“We will have to ask them (NSAs) to hold their own bubble in places outside ECQ areas,” said Fernandez.
The basketball legend also suggested that NSAs should find their own godfather to help defray the expensive cost in funding their training.
“The Olympic bubble training in Calamba by boxing, karate and taekwondo for two to three months is already worth P21 million, what more for 39 NSAs,” said Fernandez. “We will still support them but we should help each other also.”
The PSC had initially wanted to regain supervision of its sports facilities and start SEA Games training on April 15, which was already shelved due to COVID-19 spike and extended ECQ.
It didn’t help that the PSC has recently asked the Office of the President (OP) for a lockdown as 35 of its employees tested positive for the COVID-19 pandemic including 18 at PhilSports.
It also resulted to one fatality.
“(PSC acting executive director) Atty. (Guillermo) Iroy already wrote a letter asking for a lockdown so we could have time for disinfection,” said Fernandez.
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