House hails gold winners

December 05, 2019
Kristel Macrohon
Kristel Macrohon from the Philippines speaks to the media after winning the gold medal in the women's 71-kg weightlifting category at the SEA Games Wednesday. AFP

THE House of Representatives will raise at least P10 million collected from the January 2020 salaries of all its members to grant additional benefits to Filipino gold medalists of the 30th Southeast Asian Games (SEAG), the Office of Speaker Alan Peter Cayetano said Thursday.

House resolution 568 congratulating the Filipino winners  in  the 30th SEAG aims to hail our athletes in anticipation of the Philippines’ massive medal haul in the Games, which is the biggest held so far with 530 events covering 56 sports this year.

The pledge of at least P10 million in additional benefits for Filipino SEAG gold medalists  were upon the  initiative of Speaker Cayetano, who chairs the Philippine SEA Games Organizing Committee (PHISGOC); House Majority Leader Martin Romualdez;  Deputy Speakers Paolo Duterte and Prospero Pichay; House Committee on Accounts chairman Rep. Abraham Tolentino, who is also president of the Philippine Olympic Committee (POC); and House Committee on Youth and Sports Development chairman, Rep. Eric Martinez.

“Whereas, as a concrete manifestation of the commonality of the goal to bring honor and pride to the country, the leaders and members of the House of Representatives deem it proper to deduct individual pledges from their salaries for January 2020 as additional incentives to Filipino gold medal winners in the 30th SEA Games,” stated the resolution that was adopted by the plenary last Wednesday

The resolution further stated that “by winning gold medals in their respective sports in the 30th SEA Games and for bringing great honor and pride to the Filipino people, it is but fitting to grant these athletes the additional incentives from the POC and the House of Representatives.”

This additional incentive from the House for gold medalists  is on top of what they are entitled to under the law, and the cash prizes given to them by the POC.

“The leaders and members of the House of Representatives in the 18th Congress stood in solidarity with Team Philippines throughout the competition in their quest to capture the gold medals in their respective sports, and bring honor and pride to the Filipino people,” the resolution said.

This year’s SEAG,  which is ongoing in various venues in Luzon, was declared open by President Duterte  last November 30 in an impressive and widely praised ceremony held at the Philippine Arena in Bulacan, and will conclude on December 11 at the New Clark City in Tarlac.

A total of 1,094 Filipino athletes, backed by 753 coaches, are competing in this SEAG.