Tolentino eyes good start as new POC president


Posted at Jul 30 2019 05:05 PM

Tolentino eyes good start as new POC president 1
Bambol Tolentino makes an appearance at the PSA Forum. Handout photo

MANILA, Philippines -- Newly elected Philippine Olympic Committee (POC) president Abraham "Bambol" Tolentino is looking for the healing process to begin, as he convenes the POC board for the first time on Friday.

Tolentino will meet his board at the POC office, in his first official capacity as head of the country's Olympic body since being elected to the post last Sunday.

The first order of the day is to extend his hands to the rest of the board, and show his sincerity and readiness in working with them.

Tolentino also stressed that he is ready to answer issues previously raised by the board, during the term of immediate past president Ricky Vargas shortly before he resigned from his post.

"I will answer them kung ano ang itatanong nila. And nasa kanila na kung tatangapin nila 'yung sagot ko. Basta sasagutin ko lahat ng tanong nila," said Tolentino during the Philippine Sportswriters Association (PSA) Forum on Tuesday at the Amelie Hotel-Manila.

"Hopefully this would be a good start for the POC," he added.

Tolentino's immediate course of action is to focus on the preparations being made by the country for its hosting of the 30th Southeast Asian Games later this year.

However, they cannot move forward unless the entire POC is on board, according to Tolentino.

"Unity muna. You cannot have those directions if you don’t have unity," said Tolentino, who is also the representative of the 7th district of Cavite. "We have to focus on the SEA Games so kailangan natin ng unity. Kung hindi tayo united, forget about everything."

Update on the SEA Games will the main agenda of the board, with Tolentino inviting a member of the Philippine SEA Games Organizing Committee (PHISGOC) during the meeting.

Tolentino also confirmed that he will give up his position as PHISGOC sports director. As POC president, he will automatically assume the position of PHISGOC vice-chairman.

With less than two years at the helm of the POC, Tolentino said his concentration will be more on the short-term planning like the SEA Games, Para Games, and the 2020 Tokyo Olympics.

"Kalimutan muna natin 'yung long-range planning, whatever plans or programs that you have in mind. That’s not doable kasi very short lang 'yung term," said Tolentino.

He also vowed to pursue the changes that Vargas has previously laid down, although Tolentino also said that he intended to be more of a hands-on leader.

"Pipilitin nating maayos ito dahil ako po ay matagal ng nag-graduate sa mga kaguluhan," said Tolentino.

"Lahat ng gulo napasok ko na pero naayos ko naman. Kaya 'yung last two terms ko as congressman, wala nang lumaban sa akin, and that shows that they have accepted my governance," he added.

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