PRESIDENT Duterte on Tuesday told the Philippine Sports Commission to widen its search for Filipino athletes in the midst of the Philippines hosting the 2019 Southeast Asian Games.
Duterte said the country's hosting of the 30th SEA Games under his administration is an opportunity to look for more athletes that will increase the talent pool for international competitions.
"In 2019, I'm honored that the Philippines will host the 30th Southeast Asian Games," Duterte said in his speech during the turnover of cash incentives at Malacanang Palace to medalists in the recent SEA Games in Kuala Lumpur.
"This will be an opportunity for us to look for talented Filipino athletes from all over the country. Thus, I enjoin the PSC to widen its scope and recruit nationwide," said Duterte.
"Look for them in non-traditional places and include members of the indigenous tribes and out-of-school youth. Let us give them a chance to hone their talent and live up to their fullest potentials," said Duterte.
Duterte also congratulated Malaysia for the successful staging of the biennial meet last month.
"The event is a symbol of the Asean's commitment to strengthen our partnership and cooperation towards a common goal of a more prosperous and united region in the coming years," said Duterte.
Present during the ceremony incentives was PSC chairman William 'Butch' Ramirez, Philippine Olympic Committee president Jose 'Peping' Cojuangco and Presidential Adviser for Sports Dennis Uy.