Labella throws full support to Cebuano athletes in SEA Games


CEBU CITY, Philippines – Cebu City Mayor Edgardo Labella ordered the Cebu City Sports Commission to monitor the living conditions of the Cebuano athletes who will be competing in the 30th Southeast Asian Games starting on November 30.

Mayor Labella issued directives to CCSC Chairman Edward Hayco to be attentive to the needs of the Cebuano athletes, during the short program of the Send-Off Mass and Ceremony for the athletes and officials who are representing the country in the biennial event.

Labella’s directives came at the heels of reports about the lack of accommodation and bad foods served to the participating athletes in Manila.

“I want the Cebu City Sports Commission, Ed Hayco, to monitor the situation of our Cebuano athletes. See if they were given good accommodation and foods. Because if not, I will be there for them to attend their needs,” Mayor Labella said.

The CCSC held a Send-Off Mass and Ceremony for the Cebuano athletes and officials on Nov. 26, 2019 at the Cebu City Sports Center that was attended by Mayor Labella, vice Mayor Michael Rama, Councilors Dondon Hontiveros and Jessica Resch and CCSC executive director Amilo Lopez and Board of Commissioners including Hayco, vice chairman Lorenzo Sy, Atty. Troy Malilong, and DepEd Cebu City Division sports coordinators Gerome Misa and Francis Ramirez.

The affair was also attended by Cebu City Athletes, who rendered an interpretative dance depicting some of the events that will be played in the SEA Games.

The Cebuano athletes who will be competing in the biennial games include the country’s Marathon Queen Mary Joy Tabal, triathlete Kim Andrew Remolino, Skateboarding champion Margielyn Didal, Wilbert Aunzo and Pearl Caneda of Dancesports, taekwondo jins Nica Garces (Kyorugi), Aidaine Laxa and Rinna Babanto (Poomsae), judoka Kiyomi Watanabe, air rifle shooter Larry Avila (Metallic Silhouette), Rubilyn Amit and Warren Kiamco of billiards, wakeboarder Ralph Trinidad, John Fabuar Ceniza and Elreen Ann Ando of weightlifting, Dexler Bolambao of arnis, Nino Surban of cycling, Sherwin Managuil in Obstacle Racing, rhythmic gymnastics Daniela Reggie de la Pisa, Rheyjhey Ortousete and Medoio Suico of sepak takraw, Sisi Rondina, Edmar Bonono and Jame Buytrago of beach volleyball, Jordan Jarvis of football, Joane Orbon of Karatedo, LK Go of golf, Alexis Sy of bowling and Jerome Bacarisas for Men’s softball.

While the Cebuano officials called to extend their technical knowledge to their respective events are weightlifting judge Ramon Solis, Arnis Tournament Director Gerald Canete, dancesports tournament official Loloi Rendon, cycling tournament official Oscar “Boying” Rodriguez, archery tournament director Dondon Sombrio, chess arbiter Michael Pagaran, beach volleyball tournament official Jordan Paca and coaches Isaac Bacarisas of baseball and Jasper Cabrera for softball.

University of San Carlos (USC) Athletic Director Fr. Adriano Ocariza, SVD, who officiated the mass, shared the letter of Pope Francis to Cardinal Kevin Farerell, the Prefect of the Dicastery for Laity, Family and Life who presented a new document entitled, “To give the best of Oneself. On the Christian Perspective of Sport and of the Human Perspective.”

According to Fr. Ocariza, the Pope said “sport is a privileged area around which people meet without any distinction of race, sex, religion or ideology. It is where we can experience of competing to reach a goal together, participating in a team, where success or defeat is shared an overcome.”

“Here the Pope emphasized the role of sports as a means for the mission and sanctification, explaining that the Church is called to be a sign of Jesus Christ in the world, also through sports practiced in oratories, parishes, schools and associations. As a conclusion he (Pope Francis) said that sports is a very source of values and virtues that help us to become better people, training, practicing, discovering our limits without fear, struggling daily to improve,” Fr. Ocariza concluded.

Towards the event of his homily, Fr. Ocariza wished the athletes and officials good luck and make the bests of the moments they will experience during the SEA Games.

Of the 29 athletes and nine officials where whom the mass and program was intended to, only Tabal, Aunzo and Caneda were the only athletes and Sombrio and Rendo among the officials who were present. RCM