April 15, 2024

■  Ofelia C. Empian 

Acknowledging the hard work and dedication of the athletes and coaches in Benguet, Rep. Eric Go Yap gave P147,000 incentives to 60 athletes and coaches on Feb. 20.

In a simple ceremony, Yap lauded the achievement of the athletes and coaches who won medals du-ring the 2023 Philippine National Games for athletes 18 years old and up and Batang Pinoy Games for 17 years old and below.

CASH INCENTIVES — Benguet Rep. Eric Go Yap posed with some of the medal-winning members of the combative sports team led by coaches Bryan Olod (4th from left, standing) and Karn Jariya Amado (rightmost, standing) who won during the latest Philippine National Games and Batang Pinoy during the simple awarding ceremony initiated by the office of the congressman, who gave P147,000 incentives to medal winners who represented the province during the national games. — Ofelia Empian

The awarded athletes and coaches were mostly from the combative sports with seven awardees for arnis, three for boxing, two for karate, 18 for kickboxing, four for Muay Thai, three for pencak silat, and 21 for wrestling; and two for athletics.

During the games held in Pasig City, Yap saw the determination and competitiveness of the athletes and coaches in their respective sports events.

Talking to the young athletes, he encouraged them to engage in sports, as what they are learning can be applied in all aspects of their lives such as in their personal and future careers. 

He said the financial aspect is important for the athletes and coaches for them to be in their optimum performance. 

Yap’s office is also working closely with the provincial go-vernment to improve the province’s sports equipment and facilities. 

In response to the incentive, one of the combatives coaches, Karn Jariya Amado, thanked the lawmaker and the provincial government of Benguet for the incentives and for giving value to the hard work of the athletes and coaches.

“It’s not an easy road but we thank you for your support. We hope that there will be more athletes who will join our upcoming national competitions with your continuous support,” Amado said.

 Amado, who led the kickboxing, Muay Thai, and Pencak Silat events, said there could have been more gold medals added to the province had the results of the other combative sports events been added.

But due to the delayed results and problems on tallying, some 10 athletes who won gold medals were not included in the final medal tally of the province in the PNG event.   

In the unofficial PNG result, Benguet ranked number 21 with five gold,10 silver, and five bronze medals while the province ranked 62 in the BP with three gold, five silver, and seven bronze medals. 

“This is not a big issue for us, we understand that there are lapses that cannot be avoided during any competitions,” she said.

She said the main aim of the province’s combative athletes is to train well for the upcoming national games to be at par with their neighboring Baguio City athletes who are consistently topping the medal haul during the PNG and BP events.  

Provincial Sports and Development Coordinator Dean Mark Monang said the provincial LGU is working with the office of the congressman in helping to uplift Benguet’s athletes.

Aside from the sports incentives given by the PLGU, it also helps in providing venues for the athletes to train and to conduct their sporting events.