MIKEE Romero bared his first order of business as representative for the 1Pacman Party list is to connect with the athletes and coaches nationwide to make sure they receive the benefits entitled them under Republic Act 10699.
“I just want to make sure that they are getting what are due to them because I heard that some of the benefits have yet to be implemented fully,” said Romero, hours before he took his proclamation as one of the new faces in the House of Representatives.
Romero said national athletes and coaches should be treated with high regard for their sacrifice during training in their quest to give honor to the country, and should not be shortchanged from their benefits under RA 10699, an act expanding the coverage of incentives granted national athletes and coaches and appropriating funds thereof.
“They put the country in the sporting map because of the sacrifices they made so it’s just natural that we treat them very well,” said Romero. “Our athletes are our national treasures.”
While Romero is fully aware that athletes who win medals in international events like SEA Games and Asian Games get their monetary rewards, he received reports that some benefits are yet to be fully awarded, including affordable housing loans.
Under RA 10699, national athletes should be prioritized in national housing programs, affordable “pabahay” loans and other housing opportunities subject to the guidelines and qualifications set by the National Housing Authority (NHA) or the Home Development Mutual Fund (HDMF).
Romero said they are also entitled to existing livelihood programs under various government agencies.
National athletes are also entitled to 20 percent discount from transportation services, hotels and other lodging establishments, restaurants and recreation centers and purchase of medicine and sports equipment.
The same discount should also be afforded to athletes on admission fees charged by theaters, cinema houses and concert halls, circuses, carnivals, and other similar places of culture, leisure and amusement.
“For them to avail these benefits, they have to consult officials of the Philippine Sports Commission,” said Romero. “They have to know their benefits as national athletes and coaches.”