MANILA, Philippines -- Philippine Sports Commission (PSC) chairman William "Butch" Ramirez on Tuesday officially received the deed of donation from Bataan Governor Albert Garcia for the land on which the Philippine Sports Training Center will be constructed.
"I am so happy and excited about this newly forged partnership with the provincial government of Bataan," said Ramirez during the turnover rites. "This will give our national athletes a new home as they continue to bring pride and honor to our country."
Ramirez, who was celebrating his 71st birthday, said the partnership "was one of the best birthday gifts" he has received.
The provincial government of Bataan donated six lots to the PSC, with a land area of about 250,000 square meters. The lots are situated in the municipality of Bagac.
Among the provisions of the deed of donation is that the infrastructure shall be constructed and completed by December 31, 2025, subject to extension upon agreement by the parties.
"Nagpapasalamat po kami sa Philippine Sports Commission at sa lahat po ng nagtulong-tulong. Isa po itong magandang project para lalong gumaling ang ating mga atletang Pilipino," said Garcia.
The PSC accepted the offer of the Bataan provincial government, given the strategic location of the venue and its significance in the country's history.
Republic Act 11214, the law which created the Philippine Sports Training Center, seeks to "promote and develop sports in the country, to achieve excellence in international sports competitions, to ensure success in the country's quest to achieve competitiveness in the Olympic Games and to promote international amity among nation."
It was signed by President Rodrigo Duterte last February 2019.
The amount of P3.5 billion is appropriated by the law for the construction of infrastructure and shall be included in the annual General Appropriations Act. The said amount is necessary to carry out other provisions of the act, particularly for the maintenance, operation, and management of the PSTC.
The state-of-the-art sports hub will feature numerous facilities for administrative, sports science, medical and dormitories for athletes and coaches; with sports amenities for 39 Olympic and non-Olympic sports.
Ramirez was joined by PSC commissioners Ramon Fernandez, Arnold Agustin, and Celia Kiram, and PSC national training director Marc Velasco.
Meanwhile, Garcia was joined by 2nd District of Bataan Representative Jose Enrique Garcia III, Municipal Mayor Maria Angela Garcia and Engr. Emmanuel Pineda.