THE Philippine Olympic Committee (POC) has granted provisional recognition to the newly formed Philippine National Volleyball Federation Inc. (PNVF) during its general assembly on Wednesday.
While giving temporary recognition to the PNVF pending submission of pertinent documents such as the articles of incorporation, the POC also approved the expulsion of the Philippine Volleyball Federation and the Larong Volleyball ng Pilipinas Inc., two NSAs that previously were members of the national Olympic body.
Ramon ‘Tats’ Suzara was elected president in the PNVF elections supervised by the POC and as ordered by the International Volleyball Federation (FIVB) involving stakeholders of the sport in a move to end legitimacy issues of the NSA.
Several members of the POC, however, opposed the election of Suzara as PNVF president mainly because the concurrent chief of the Philippine Southeast Asian Games Organizing Committee (Phisgoc) has not complied with the request of the previous POC administration to submit the audited financial statements of the country’s hosting of the SEA Games last year.
Weightlifting president Monico Puentevella moved to defer recognizing the election of Suzara as PNVF president, but the motion was denied by POC president Abraham ‘Bambol’ Tolentino.
“The president of Phisgoc who has not complied with the request and the approval of the general assembly is coincidentally the same person as the president of volleyball association that you have worked recently. With all the efforts you have done which we have acknowledged, may I remind the body that Mr. Suzara is the same person who has filed charges in court against six of the regular members of the POC, a committee he wants to join and a committee that has not been given the financial report of Phisgoc, as COA said, in the amount of P2.7 billion,” said Puentevella.
“In fairness to POC, let me be the first to endorse Mr. Suzara as president if and when he submits and complies with the COA demand, and approve unanimously by POC general assembly that he must comply before he wants to join this body,” he added.
Athletics chief Philip Ella Juico, who is also the chairman of the Philippine Super Liga, and squash president Robert Bachmann also opposed Suzara’s election as PNVF president.
Juico questioned the legitimacy of Suzara as a volleyball stakeholder as “he is representing a group called Fessap which in my years in volleyball, I never encountered in the volleyball community.”
For his part, Bachmann said the PNVF must only be given full recognition by the POC only if the LVPI receives a refund of $80,000, a payment for the unsettled obligations to FIVB of the previous NSAs of volleyball, the Philippine Amateur Volleyball Association.
POC secretary general Edwin Gastanes urged Puentevella to file a protest against Suzara in a proper forum such as the ethics and arbitration committees.