The 116th Philippine Swimming League (PSL) National Series scheduled on Saturday in Cagayan de Oro City will push through despite the declaration of martial law by President Rodrigo Duterte in Mindanao.
Cagayan de Oro City Mayor Oscar Moreno on Thursday said the tournament, where more than 300 tankers are expected to compete will push through.
“The PSL tournament is very important to us. First, it is the first time that a swimming competition of this level is held in Cagayan de Oro City. Second, and more importantly, it is our aim that this tournament will serve as an inspiration for our young swimmers in CDO and the Region,” Moreno said.
The ongoing battle between the Maute terrorist group and government troops in Marawi City triggered the declaration of martial law in Mindanao.
Moreno assured the safety of the participants, tournament organizers and officials as well as the public in general during the event. “I want to reassure everyone that we will do everything we can to ensure the success of the PSL tournament and the safety and security of the participants,” he said.
The event will be held at the Kagayan Lawndale Resort, a project that the city has reopened recently with huge improvements.
Teams from Manila, Bicol, Aklan, Iloilo, Capiz, Bulacan and Baguio have already confirmed their participation in the event. Former Senator and PSL Chairman Nikki Coseteng is also expected to grace the one-day meet,
The competition serves as qualifying phase for selecting swimmers that will compete in the Singapore Asean Midget Meet and the Singapore Invitational Swimming Championship as well as international competitions in Japan, United Arab Emirates, India, Hong Kong and Thailand.
The PSL is recognized by the Philippine Sports Commission as an official swimming association in the country following its successful grassroots development program that aims to train talented swimmers for future international competitions.
It is also accredited by the Federation of School Sports Association of the Philippines – an affiliate of the International University Sports Federation (FISU).