Cebu City needs to fulfill obligations in hosting Palaro

ONGOING rehabilitation. The Cebu City Sports Center was closed to the public last May for rehabilitaion works that include replacing the rubber on the oval track. The CCSC will be one of the sporting venues of the Palarong Pambansa in July.
ONGOING rehabilitation. The Cebu City Sports Center was closed to the public last May for rehabilitaion works that include replacing the rubber on the oval track. The CCSC will be one of the sporting venues of the Palarong Pambansa in July. SUNSTAR FILE

THE Cebu City Government will have its hands full for the next six months as it prepares for the Palarong Pambansa 2024, which it will host in July.

This, as the memorandum of agreement (MOA) outlining the responsibilities of the City and of the Department of Education (DepEd) for the event was submitted to the City Council.

The council approved during its regular session last Wednesday, Jan. 10, 2024, the resolution of City Councilor Donaldo Hontiveros authorizing Mayor Michael Rama to sign the MOA with DepEd.

Cebu City was selected to host the Palarong Pambansa 2024, the largest sporting event in the country for student-athletes, after winning the bid in August 2023.

With it comes several obligations like coming up with funds to cover expenses; ensuring the readiness and availability of sporting facilities, venues, billeting quarters of student-athletes and supporting staff; and complying with other infrastructural requirements.

Since last May, the City closed the Cebu City Sports Center to the public to pave the way for renovation and improvement works so it will be ready for the event.

According to the MOA, the City Government must also ensure that technical facilities, equipment and materials that will be used in the games will of international standards. The sports venues, including grandstands, bleachers and viewing areas, must be well-secured, accessible and free to the general viewing public

For the billeting quarters of all regional athletic delegations and technical officials, the City has to provide at least one room for every 10 delegation members or a minimum of 70 classrooms for every delegation.

The room should have screened windows to protect delegation members against any harm that may be brought by mosquitoes, and other insects.

The billeting quarters should have an uninterrupted, clean, and adequate water supply and electric power.

The City is also in charge of providing all the trophies and medals for all sporting events, while the Palaro board may also provide cash incentives to the athletes or coaches, depending on the availability of funds.

The City is also in charge of providing vehicles to transport delegates during their stay. These include buses to fetch them from the airport or ports, and to ferry them to and from the sporting venues. The City is to provide air-conditioned service vehicles for members of the national working committee and technical officials to ferry them to and from their billeting quarters and sporting venues.

As Palaro host, it is also the City’s responsibility to create and convene the Local Palaro Executive Committee, secretariat, and other working committees necessary for the hosting of the event.

Other responsibilities of the City, according to the MOA, include:

Enforcing ban on tobacco advertising, promotion, and sponsorship, and access restrictions within the 100-meter perimeter venues, and to prohibit receipt of donations/contributions from any third party who is part of, or who represent the interests of, or receive funding from the tobacco industry;

Provide focal persons or liaison officers or committees, or othe manpower requirement who will coordinate and assist DepEd from the preparation stage up to the actual conduct of Palarong Pambansa 2024;

Ensure the accessibility of public transportation and communication in all playing venues and billeting quarters;

Ensure that all roads leading to all billeting quarters and playing venues are well-maintained;

Provide roving and on-call medical and first-aid personnel to be assigned in all billeting quarters and sporting venues for the whole duration of the Palaro 2024; and

Provide security escorts for delegation in transit to and from playing venues and billeting quarters; among others.

Cebu hosted the Palaro in 1954 and 1994. The first edition of the games was held in 1948.

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