AN OFFICIAL of the Department of Education (DepEd)-Davao said the scheduled opening of Palarong Pambansa was moved from April 27 to April 28, Sunday, at the Davao City-University of the Philippines (UP) Sports complex.
DepEd-Davao spokesperson Jenielito Atillo said the opening rites of the annual sportsfest for elementary and high school student athletes was rescheduled due to the availability of the keynote speaker.
When asked if he was pertaining to President Rodrigo Duterte, he refused to comment but said this is not the first time that the opening program was rescheduled.
Duterte also graced the opening ceremonies of Palarong Pambansa in Bantay, Ilocos Sur in 2018.
“Actually, ang opening natin is supposed to be on the 27th and that is Saturday, but the games really will transpire on Monday pa, so no effect either minor or major. Again, let me just stress the fact that this is not the first time that we reschedule an opening program. This has happened even way, way back,” he added.
The weeklong games is expected to draw some 15,000 attendees, including the athletes, their coaches and game officials coming from the country's 17 regions.
Atillo, meanwhile, assured that a colorful and grandiose opening will be served for the Palarong Pambansa delegation, featuring different performances of local artists and known performers.
Some known celebrities and politicians confirmed their attendance.
Atillo also invited Dabawenyos to attend the opening ceremony, which will commence at 3 p.m. Sunday.