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PSC intervenes in PATAFA-Obiena dispute.

PSC steps in to pacify PATAFA-Obiena row

Philippine Sports Commission (PSC) chairman William “Butch” Ramirez has established four demands in an effort to stop the long, drawn-out dispute between Olympic pole vaulter Ernest John “EJ” Obiena and the Philippine Athletics Track and Field Association (PATAFA).

In a statement, the long-time PSC head expressed how disappointed he was with the decision of the PATAFA’s decision to drop the decorated Obiena from the Philippine national athletics team.

“PATAFA’s dropping of EJ from the athletics national team without any chance given for the athlete to appeal was a sad development. Due process requires proper disposition of issues and cases whether in government or private venues, including in administrative proceedings,” read the statement that was released by the PSC.

Ramirez then issued four directives that he hopes will help temper the current maelstrom caused by the row between Obiena and PATAFA. This includes a “demand for EJ to immediately finish his liquidation of accounts so that we can continue to support him.”

“This is a simple case of liquidation. EJ has given his partial liquidation report and the documents are now being examined and verified. This is a good step. Do not allow anyone to use those against you by getting it done. Finalize your liquidation and then you can focus on the other concerns.”

Another is the “demand for Patafa to reconsider their declaration of dropping EJ from their rolls, provide him an appeal mechanism and not to execute their decision immediately.”

Thirdly, the PSC “demand for the POC to bridge the two parties as the mother organization of both and reconsider their decision of declaring Mr. Juico persona non-grata on the premise of promoting peace in elite sports.”

The last of PSC’s demands is the “demand for the PATAFA, EJ, the POC and all the parties who wish to stoke the fire of this mad issue to stop. You have all publicly recognized the PSC and asked us to help resolve the issue, please listen to us on this simple request. Stop issuing public statements and come to the table with us to discuss this matter.”

Ramirez also pleaded with all parties involved to resolve this issue like sportsmen, saying, “We have said this before and we are saying this again. Let us resolve this like sportsmen.”

“We are sportsmen, proudly calling the Philippines our motherland. Instead of throwing accusations against each other, can we not talk as sportsmen trained and exposed to the core values of Olympism — excellence, friendship, and respect.”

“The issue has dragged on and has pulled the nation’s name to the mire of negativity in the international sports scene. We all pledge our love for country, we trust that you will heed our call immediately, for love of flag. Para sa Inang Bayan!”

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