THE Association of Boxing Alliances in the Philippines Inc. (ABAP) will hold its first General Assembly and Organizational Elections Friday at the Quezon City Sports Club.
Formerly known as the Amateur Boxing Association of the Philippines, ABAP changed its name as mandated by the International Boxing Association (AIBA) which dropped the word amateur in all organizations under its aegis.
What used to be known as “amateur boxing” will henceforth be referred to as “open boxing.”
The new ABAP has been officially recognized by AIBA, the Philippine Olympic Committee and the Philippine Sports Commission. It is duly registered in the Securities and Exchange Commission.
For the past four years, ABAP has been headed by businessman-sportsman Manuel V. Pangilinan as chairman, and Maynilad Water chief executive Ricky Vargas as president.
Various companies under the MVP Group have been bank-rolling the association’s local tournaments and international exposures, as well as incentives and benefits for boxers and coaches.
Principal sponsor of ABAP is the Philippines’ biggest telecommunications network PLDT, with support from Maynilad, Smart, and the MVP Sports Foundation.
Vargas says the association identified 31 voting chapters from all over the country. These are mostly LGU’s which have boxing activities in their locales and have been participating in the boxing association’s tournaments.
ABAP regularly stages annual boxing tournaments in Luzon, Visayas, and Mindanao, culminating with the national championships in search of potential members for the PH training pool.
“If we are to continue our involvement in boxing, we need to make sure the stakeholders themselves want us there. And the best way to determine that is to go through the election process. We want our leadership validated,” said Vargas.
Among those nominated for the ABAP Board and who have accepted their nominations aside from Pangilinan and Vargas (Corporate Sector) are: Rep. Manny Pacquiao (Region XII), Misamis Oriental Gov (now Cagayan de Oro Mayor-elect) Oscar Moreno (Region X), House Deputy Speaker Raul Daza (Region VIII), Zambales Gov. Hermogenes Ebdane Jr. (Region III), Tayabas Vice Mayor Venerando Rea (Region IV-A), and Puerto Princesa Mayor Edward Hagedorn (Region IV-B). The Armed Forces of the Philippines also has a seat in the Board.
Upon election by the General Membership, Board Members elect among themselves the officers of the association. The positions of Secretary-General and Executive Director are appointive. These are currently held by Patrick Gregorio and Ed Picson, respectively.
The Philippine Olympic Committee designated POC Secretary-General Steve Hontiveros as observer to the proceedings.