AS the Philippines hosts the 30th Southeast Asian Games in 2019, President Rodrigo Duterte ordered the Philippine Sports Commission (PSC) to recruit the youth into sports nationwide, including indigenous peoples and out-of-school youth which could be the country’s next award-winning athletes.
“I enjoin the PSC (Philippine Sports Commission) to widen its scope and recruit nationwide. Look for them in non-traditional places and include members of the indigenous tribes and the out-of-school youth,” Duterte said Wednesday night in his speech at Malacañang.
Duterte directed the agency to look for athletes in non-traditional places and encourage them to focus on improving their skills and to strive to do better in the next SEA Games.
“Let us give them a chance to hone their talent and live up to their fullest potential,” he said.
Duterte assured that the government and the Filipino people will support the athletes “every step of the way.”
“Continue to represent the best of what the Philippines has to offer, here and abroad. Make us proud again,” he said.
At least P18 million in incentives will be given to athletes and at least P17 million to their coaches, after the Philippines collected 24 gold, 33 silver and 64 bronze.
Duterte likewise expressed his heartfelt gratitude to the athletes who have represented the Philippines in the recently concluded SEA Games.
“I congratulate you all, especially our medalists, for the accomplishment that has brought honor to the country. Through hard work and discipline, you have prevailed and made our nation proud,” he said.
Preparations are currently ongoing for the hosting of the biennial games, after the country earlier backed out due to the current situation in Mindanao and the “problem of terrorism and atrocities as the reasons for no longer pushing through” with the sporting event.
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