Alan Peter Cayetano as PHISGOC chair
House Speaker Alan Peter Cayetano is chair of the Philippine Southeast Asian Games Organizing Committee or PHISGOC.
PIA 3/Cherie Joyce Flores
Cayetano sorry for 'inefficiencies' on reception of SEA Games athletes
Patricia Lourdes Viray ( - November 25, 2019 - 9:50am

MANILA, Philippines — Philippine Southeast Asian Games Organizing Committee Chairperson and House Speaker Alan Peter Cayetano apologized to foreign athletes for logistical issues upon their arrival in Manila over the weekend.

National football teams from Timor Leste, Myanmar, Cambodia and Thailand have complained over issues on transportation, training and accommodation.

"To the foreign teams, we are apologizing for the inconvenience and if I may call some inefficiencies or miscoordination," Cayetano said in an ambush interview Sunday night.

Cayetano assured the SEA Games participants that they would be accorded with better service in the next days.

The PHISGOC chief added that such incidences cannot be avoided due to the lack of personnel.

"You can ge ushers but everyone else — the work force it's only when you have the games. So we're pulling out people, pulling out volunteers from state universities and those who have seen our ads," Cayetano said.

A post from Facebook page ASEAN Football News showed the football team of Timor Leste waiting for their bus at the Ninoy Aquino International Airport.

According to the post, the Timor Leste football team arrived at 5 a.m. last Saturday. They had to wait for approximately three hours for the bus that would take them to their hotel.

Apart from being late, the driver reportedly took the Timor Leste players and staff to the wrong hotel.

Another post showed that the Timor Leste football team had to wait for almost 10 hours before getting their room keys after arriving at the right hotel.

The football team of Myanmar reported the same experience having to wait for a long time at the airport for the bus that would take them to their hotel.

ASEAN Football News also reported that the interior of the bus was cramped and uncomfortable for the Myanmar team. They had to cancel their training in the evening due to these concerns.

The Cambodian football team also complained of having to wait for nearly 12 hours to get to their hotel. They also had to cancel their training after arriving late at the hotel.

The Thai football team also canceled their training last Saturday following the delay of their travel from the airport to the hotel. They also complained of the two-hour trip from the hotel to the training field.

Cayetano, meanwhile, appealed to the public to avoid bashing the Philippine government's hosting of the 30th SEA Games.

"When you bash the organizing committee to get us to act correctly or to address inefficiency it's most welcome. But if you bash us for the sake of bashing us or because you don't want (President Duterte) or other people to get the credit, you are bashing your own country," Cayetano said.

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