MANILA - Fifty out of 56 venues for the Southeast Asian Games have already been finished thus belying claims that there were delays in the construction of the venues, an official of the group in charge of preparations for the games said on Sunday.
Ramon Suzara, chief operating officer of the Philippine Southeast Asian Games Organizing Committee (PHISGOC) said only a few venues were still unfinished, but these would be completed in time for the games.
"Our competition venues are already ready since last month, we are just trying to fix some of the venues," Suzara said in an interview with ANC.
Suzara said this after former national athlete Mikee Cojuangco-Jaworski said the delay in the construction of some of the venues had robbed local athletes of their homecourt advantage, as they were not able to train in these venues.
"All the venues are ready for our Filipino athletes, they were training already in New Clark City. There are just some 4, 3 venues like the Rizal Memorial Sports Complex that has to be addressed and is a bit delayed."
Suzara also defended the construction of sports facilities in New Clark City in Tarlac.
"These are new world-class facilities because we don’t have it already in the Philippines," he said.
Suzara also explained why the cauldron in New Clark City was far from the venue of the opening ceremonies in Bulacan.
"In every opening ceremony, there are always surprises. This is the first time we have an indoor opening ceremony in the history of SEA Games and we will have simultaneous activities from Philippine Arena to the New Clark City," he said.