MANILA—Organizers of the 2019 Southeast Asian Games said on Sunday the lighting of the cauldron at New Clark City was "real", even as they sidestepped claims that it was not live but pre-recorded.
Jarie Osias, spokesman of the Philippine Southeast Asian Games Organizing Committee, said his group leaves it up to the production company to answer questions about program details.
"They would be in the best position to explain the production and technical consideration whether or not there was a taping happened at the cauldron," Osias said in an interview on ANC.
"Assuming it was taped, there was no express prohibition in the ASEAN federation as to the timing of the lighting."
In a video shown during the opening ceremonies at Philippine Arena Saturday night, world champion fighter Manny Pacquiao and amateur-boxing world champion Nesthy Petecio could be seen lighting the cauldron at NCC in Capas town, Tarlac.
More than 30,000 spectators were present at the 55,000-seater Philippine Arena, Osias said. Of this figure, some 3,000 were athletes, he added.
This is the fourth time the country has hosted the regional competition, and first since 2005.