All’s well that ends well
SPORTING CHANCE - Joaquin M. Henson (The Philippine Star) - June 21, 2019 - 12:00am

MANILA, Philippines — POC treasurer Julian Camacho called yesterday to clarify that everything is back to order in the POC. The other day, POC officials and PSC chairman Butch Ramirez were in Malacañang to brief Executive Secretary Salvador Medialdea on the latest developments in the POC following the sudden resignation of POC president Ricky Vargas. Joey Romasanta, former POC first vice president who succeeded Vargas as president under the rules stipulated in the POC By-Laws, was joined in the meeting by Camacho, auditor Jonne Go, POC Executive Board member Clint Aranas and lawyer Charlie Ho.

“We assured Secretary Medialdea the SEA Games will push through,” said Camacho. “We discussed the tripartite agreement involving the POC, PHISGOC and PSC and asked if we could strike out the portion where the POC is guaranteeing whatever PHISGOC undertakes.

If you’re a manufacturer, how can you guarantee a product that you didn’t manufacture? As POC, we will run the Games because that’s our mandate. We don’t want to handle any money but we can’t surrender the right to run the Games because that’s in the POC charter. If we surrender the right, we could be suspended by the different International Federations and even sanctioned by the IOC. We plan to meet with PHISGOC chairman and Rep. (Alan Peter) Cayetano as soon as possible to clarify issues.”

Camacho said the POC’s BDO account is back in active status. “It was on hold for a while but it’s back to normal,” he said. “The majority of the Executive Board came out with a resolution changing the combinations of signatories. We did not want to change signatories, only the combinations. Previously, the combinations were any two of the president and secretary-general or the treasurer and first vice president. Our resolution changed the combinations to the president and treasurer or the secretary-general and first vice president.”

Camacho said he was shocked when Vargas tendered his resignation in a meeting with seven members of the Executive Board at the POC office last Tuesday. “Mr. Vargas wanted to meet us alone,” he said. “We told him our motive was not to oust him. All we wanted to do was to protect ourselves from getting sued after the SEA Games like what happened to the organizing committee when we last hosted in 2005. Personally, I’m too old to suffer that kind of headache. We sat down with Mr. Vargas and discussed issues. Then, he announced his resignation. We were all surprised. Some of us almost cried. I felt bad it had to come to that. Our promise is we will continue what Mr. Vargas started – the ISO certification, transparency, professionalism. He told us he was pressured by family and corporate responsibilities.”

Camacho said he is back to signing POC checks as treasurer. “I’m on call 24/7,” said Camacho. “Anytime, anyone wants to contact me for whatever matter about the POC, I’m available. As I mentioned, we want to continue the good things that Mr. Vargas started.”

Camacho said calling for a special election to designate Vargas’ successor isn’t necessary. “The POC still recognizes Joey as president of the karate NSA,” he said. “Under the POC By-Laws, the first vice president will succeed to fill in the vacancy as president. We’ve studied the matter closely. Let’s just move forward. The SEA Games is fast approaching. We need to work double time to make it a success.”

BUTCH RAMIREZ JULIAN CAMACHO
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