Molding the future
SPORTING CHANCE - Joaquin M. Henson (The Philippine Star) - October 22, 2020 - 12:00am

For POC presidential candidate Clint Aranas, what’s at stake in the Nov. 27 elections is the future of Philippine sports. In his words, it’s about “molding the future” and “mentoring the next generation” because “failing to plan is planning to fail.”

Aranas heads a ticket that is composed of reelectionist Steve Hontiveros for chairman, Philip Juico for first vice president, Ada Milby for second vice president, reelectionist Julian Camacho for treasurer, Monico Puentevella for auditor and Robert Bachmann, Charlie Ho, Pearl Managuelod and reelectionist Robert Mananquil for board members. Aranas calls it “Team Sports” where S stands for service to the stakeholders, P for pro-active professional performance, O for one in the passion, mission, vision and commitment for a better POC, R for responsible and accountable to constituents in governance, T for transparency and honesty and S for a strong and self-sufficient POC.

“I don’t need individual legacy,” says Aranas, the NSA president for archery. “This is not for the money. Our long-term goal is continuity, otherwise we won’t last the course. Our platform is grounded on good governance, accountability and transparency. Our vision is to bring POC back to its roots. We want to be relevant, we want NSAs to be self-reliant and self-sufficient. We don’t want to be totally dependent on PSC. We want to explain to corporate sponsors why investing in sports is viable because it’s tax deductible. We’ll put out plans and programs for sponsors to buy into. It’ll be easy to pitch and the investments will go directly to NSAs.”

Aranas says he’s aspiring for just one full term of four years. “It’s a brief stop,” he says. “After four years, I’ll go back to farming.  I’m a farm boy, I grow farm to table food. I have experience as a corporate finance adviser, tax and insurance lawyer, former BIR deputy commissioner and former GSIS president. Continuity is important to prepare our future leaders. That’s why I want all NSA presidents to be active in committees, to play an active role in POC. I’m open to critique. There are different perceptions on how things should be run. I’m open to independent minds which is why our ticket includes Pearl who is also in the other ticket. It will be an easy transition to reconciliation after the elections. No barriers. We want unity in sports, we want a working board with lots of activity and discussion. We want POC to be closer to NSAs. I’ll leave POC with an organized legacy. We’ll work on a manual to institutionalize processes in how to do things efficiently.”

Bachmann says he’ll work to establish help desks on accounting and legal matters in POC for NSAs, set up a POC room for the Athletes Commission to stay close to the action, reactivate “dead” standing committees in ethics, arbitration and ways and means, hold IOC seminars and courses for NSAs and create a collective effort in lobbying for the restart of sports with the IATF. Mananquil says accountability and transparency are crucial in making things right in POC decision-making. “The problem is often procedural, sometimes short-cuts are taken,” he explains. “Ilagay lang sa tama. There is a process to follow. It’s not right to be divisive, to call one group the Magnificent 7. All NSAs are important and we must be united.” Mananquil’s experience as an athlete in marathon and tennis and as an executive with the Vice Mayors League is an asset he counts on.

Camacho, NSA secretary-general for wushu, has been POC treasurer for 16 years while Juico is NSA president for athletics and former PSC chairman with a distinguished record in the academe. Hontiveros has an extensive history with POC as a former secretary-general and is NSA president for handball. Milby, the NSA secretary-general for rugby and two-time SEA Games rugby 7s player, was recently named one of the world’s 50 most influential figures in her sport. Puentevella is a former Congressman and NSA president for weightlifting. He’s the man behind Hidilyn Diaz’ emergence as an Olympic medalist. Ho is NSA president for netball, former POC secretary-general and noted lawyer. Managuelod is NSA secretary-general for muaythai and a common candidate of the opposing tickets.

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