WE take it at face value.
That’s the simple reaction PSC commissioner and Numero Uno POC critic Ramon Fernandez has on the Pasig RTC nulling the 2016 POC elections that had Peping Cojuangco running unopposed. Ricky vargas, the head of the boxing NSA, was disqualified and as a consequence he filed a case against Peping.
More than a year later, the wheels of justice finally turned and the Pasig RTC has ordered the POC to hold another election, this time with Vargas in the slate, in February 2018.
Peping, the wily politician, is expected to fight the move.
“I don’t think Mr. Cojuangco will just take it sitting down. He will not just give it up and definitely, he will not step down,” Fernandez said during the press conference for PSC Visayas’ year-end activity.
El Presidente expects the POC President to file an appeal and take the matter all the way to the Supreme Court if the 82-year-old, four-term president has to.
Of course, doing so might get the Philippines into the radar of the International Olympic Committee, who frowns on all things that reek of government interference.
“I’m hoping na ma suspend ta sa IOC, that’s going to be a short cut for us,” he said.
Getting suspended from the IOC means the Philippines won’t be able to join the SEA Games, Asian Games and even the Olympics, but I’m not sure if that also includes suspension from competitions of the international orgs under the IOC umbrela, like Fiba’s World Cup qualifiers. But I think not.
Why pray for a suspension? Because it has come to this. That’s the only way to force change in the POC, whose officials, sadly, see themselves as the sole savior in Philippine sports. (Of course, they’d disqualify anyone who’d challenge them.)
There’s an honorable option of course and that’s for Peping to step down but after maneuvering everything to make sure he’d win the 2016 election, would the veteran leader do that?
Perhaps crows will turn white in February, 2018?
Peping will turn 83 next year and I hope he realizes that he can still change his legacy in Philippine sports. Right now, it’s of an over-staying president who has done nothing to improve the country’s sports system.
Stepping down might be his best option.