MANILA, Philippines — Philippine Olympic Committee president Abraham Tolentino said the POC might reconsider its decision declaring Philippine Athletics Track and Field Association president Philip Ella Juico persona non grata should the mediation between the PATAFA and pole vault ace EJ Obiena end well.
“We’ll follow the process. We’ll cross the bridge when we get there,” said POC president Abraham Tolentino during yesterday’s interview with Noli Eala’s Power and Play at One PH.
Tolentino said the POC will observe the ceasefire on the Obiena issue by calling off its general assembly initially scheduled on Wednesday and rescheduling it to Jan. 26.
“We in the POC are also in a ceasefire just like EJ and PATAFA,” said Tolentino.
PATAFA was first to heed the call of Malacañang and the Philippine Sports Commission to put an end to the impasse by suspending the former’s implementation of their recommendations that included the expulsion of Obiena from the national team.
The 26-year-old Obiena then relented and said he was open to mediation.
Tolentino is hoping the mediation is successful.
If not, the POC president vowed to do everything they can to support Obiena.
“We will give full support to EJ. It’s difficult to mold an athlete like EJ. It may take us another 15 to 20 years before we can produce someone like him. And it would be a waste if we lose this athlete,” said Tolentino.
“We will look for private funding for EJ if it comes to that,” he added.
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