Philippine boxing body insists it fulfilled needs of Magno, other pugs
Association of Boxing Alliances in the Philippines president Ricky Vargas

Philippine boxing body insists it fulfilled needs of Magno, other pugs

Joey Villar (Philstar.com) - March 19, 2021 - 3:21pm

MANILA, Philippines – The Association of Boxing Alliances in the Philippines (ABAP) was never remiss in providing the needs of its national boxers, including Tokyo-bound Irish Magno, who earlier this week posted on her Facebook page about the delay on her monthly allowance. 
ABAP president Ricky Vargas stressed this Friday in response to insinuations in social media that the association has not done anything to alleviate their athletes’ plight.

“While we did not want to trumpet our efforts to help our athletes and coaches, we are now constrained to clarify that we have not been blind or unresponsive to their financial troubles,” said Vargas in a statement. “As a matter of fact, a week before Irish’s post, we indeed extended financial assistance to all our boxers and coaches.

“Even during the lengthy lockdown period last year, ABAP also provided cash assistance to all our boxers and coaches as far as our own finances would allow,” he added.

The Philippine Sports Commission had already released the allowance just a few days after Magno’s rants, which was since deleted.

Vargas said they always rewarded the accomplishments of their boxers while recognizing the PSC as a vital partner to ABAP’s success.

"We acknowledge the sacrifices and hardships our athletes and coaches go through in the struggle for national pride. And for this, we have always seen to it that they are amply rewarded for their achievements and have taken care of their basic needs in nutrition, sports psychology, strength and conditioning and the best possible training possible,” said Vargas.

“We also acknowledge that the PSC has been a partner in these efforts.”

Vargas said athletes have the right to free speech.

“That said, we are also not going to prevent our athletes from exercising their rights and speaking their mind. This is not to ‘spoil’ them, but to allow them the basic freedoms provided under our democratic society. We are not inclined to scold or reprimand them for speaking out. We would rather offer a concrete explanation for them to understand,” said Vargas.

Vargas encouraged the country’s top sports officials to be honest with the national athletes.

“That is what Irish and other national athletes are asking for — an explanation and a concrete statement on what the problem is and they will surely understand that you cannot squeeze water from a stone. We need to be honest with them as we expect them to be honest with us,” he said.

“We are confident that those in a position to give this explanation would do so to assuage the anxieties of our national athletes and coaches during these difficult times.

 “We owe them that.”

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