FROM the moment Noli Eala was appointed as chairman of the Philippine Sports Commission, several basketball fans expressed their hope that the newly-appointed official can step in to facilitate changes in the Gilas Pilipinas program.
The hope stemmed from thoughts Eala expressed on his Twitter account where he spoke his mind on the current situation of the national team’s program especially recently where Gilas has suffered defeats including during the Southeast Asian Games in Hanoi.
Eala admitted he is aware of the sentiments of the fans after his official appointment, but maide it clear that his opinion is from the perspective of a basketball fan.
As for the clamor of the fans for him to take action in his new role in government, Eala pointed out that national sports associations like the Samahang Basketbol ng Pilipinas (SBP) are autonomous private organizations.
As such, the PSC is limited to supervisory powers over the NSAs as per Republic Act 6847 or the PSC law, Eala added.
“I’ve read it and it’s also because, I guess, they read some of my posts,” said Eala during an interview with a handful of reporters in his first day as PSC chairman. “And again, I made my post as a fan and as an ordinary sports fan katulad nila.
“Wearing another hat now, and it’s in our charter that NSAs are autonomous. However, while they are autonomous, there are certain areas where the PSC has supervisory and visitorial authority over an NSA,” said Eala, a former executive director of the SBP.
But even with the NSA’s autonomy, Eala said he expects the SBP to address the issues that the organization is facing at the moment, as an independent federation.
“I think as far as I’m concerned, I believe that the SBP will do what is necessary. I’ll leave it at that. The jurisdiction remains with them,” said the former PBA commissioner.
Despite his previous takes on the federation and the national team, Eala said that the PSC will support the SBP especially in its hosting of the 2023 Fiba Basketball World Cup.
“We will support them particularly in the World Cup hosting. Ang nakataya diyan, ang pangalan ng bansa. We will definitely be there for them,” said Eala.
“As far as the national team is concerned, just like all the other NSAs, we will treat it the same way. They are autonomous and I hope they act responsibly as an autonomous NSA,” said Eala.