• PSL’s success in democratizing Philippine swimming

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    SUSAN PAPA

    SUSAN PAPA

    The democratization of Philippine swimming is one of the ultimate visions of the Philippine Swimming League (PSL).

    PSL’s partnership with Sen. Nikki Coseteng started in December 2010 with the tournament titled “Pinoy Peace and Unity Swim.” The goal of the tilt is to unify Philippine swimming.

    The PSL has met many obstacles along the way—and just like in childbirth, the birth pain is sometimes overwhelming.

    Politics is the foremost hindrance to achieving unity.

    The Philippine Swimming Inc. (PSI) headed by Mark Joseph and under the Philippine Olympic Committee (POC) used the “unauthorized relation” rule of the Federation Internationale de Natation (FINA) to push its selfish agenda.

    The Philippine Sports Commission (PSC) then under Ricardo Garcia tolerated this for six years.

    Thanks to the present administration under President Duterte and PSC Chairman William “Butch” Ramirez, our voice was heard; there is now a call for a change.

    The fight for freedom is so costly for PSL.

    With legal actions taken, young swimmers will be spared from trouble, and those that have not been born yet would benefit from PSL’s crusade for freedom.

    The PSL Board has filed a case at the Ombudsman against the former Philippine Games and Amusement Corp. (Pagcor) Chairman Efraim Genuino and Mark Joseph together with Pagcor members for violation of Republic Act 3019 Anti-Graft and Corrupt Practices Act. The Ombudsman has forwarded the case to the Sandiganbayan.

    A case was also filed against Garcia and his former commissioners for Violation of Section 3 (f) of RA 3019 and Section 5 of RA 6113 known as Code of Conduct of Ethical Standards for Public Officials and Employees.

    There is also an ongoing Child Abuse case against Joseph at the Quezon City Regional Trial Court.

    To propagate awareness, the PSL gives seminars to educate the swimming community about their Constitutional rights—emphasizing that the right to swim is not against the law.

    Let the “open to all” policy be implemented so that every Filipino swimmer will have the opportunity to show their talent and ability.

    Following the Duterte administration’s “Call for a Change,” Chairman Ramirez conducted a consultative meeting among National Sports Associations at the Century Park Hotel in Manila last week.

    Chairman Ramirez said that he would invite swimming groups other than the PSI to participate in the selection process for national team.

    In other words, non-PSI swimmers, if they qualify, will become members of the national team and will be getting benefits from the PSC.

    Joseph is no longer visible nowadays. A certain Lani Velasco representing PSI, said that they welcome the participation of PSL for the sake of unification.

    This is what PSL together with Sen. Nikki has been fighting for.

    Kudos to the present PSC leadership!

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