BAGUIO CITY – Presidential Communications Operations Office Secretary Martin Andanar committed to Baguio and Benguet officials his support for the desire of the two local governments to host the 2018 Palarong Pambansa that will project the two strategic areas as a premier sports and recreation center outside Metro Manila.
Andanar, who was in the city over the weekend to advance the government’s effort to strengthen the provincial and city information officers network, said he fully supports the planned participation of Baguio and Benguet in the upcoming bidding of the hosting of next year’s Palarong Pambansa because the sports facilities in the two contiguous areas are almost complete enough to accommodating the simultaneous conduct of numerous sports events.
“You are assured of my commitment to support your bid for the hosting of next year’s Palarong Pambansa. I will try my best to make representations with the concerned officials responsible for evaluating the bids that will be submitted to consider the Baguio and Benguet’s bid to achieve the desired coolest Palaro ever,” Secretary Andanar stressed.
The PCOO chief underscored Baguio and Benguet enjoy a distinct advantage because of its cool weather condition conducive to the continuous conduct of games even at the height of summer that will allow the timely completion of the scheduled games during the week-long sports competition.
Mayor Mauricio G. Domogan lauded Andanar’s commitment to support the bid of Baguio and Benguet to host next year’s staging of the Palarong Pambansa because it will be the first time that the two local governments will be jointly hosting the national sports competition in such a big magnitude that can help spur the sustained promotion of the city and the province as a premier sports and tourism destination.
Earlier, stakeholders from the academe, business, volunteer responders, various government agencies, local officials signed a pledge of commitment of all-out support to the bid of Baguio and Benguet and that they will extend all the needed support to the two local governments for the successful conduct of the Palarong Pambansa in next year.
Benguet Gov. Crescencio Pacalso pointed out the support committed by Secretary Andanar is a big boost to the bid of the two local governments to host next year’s Palarong Pambansa and that with the snowballing support the two are getting from stakeholders and outside supporters, there will be a good chance for Baguio and Benguet to host the week-long national sports competition.
It can be recalled that Baguio City attempted to bid for the hosting of the 1996 Palarong Pambansa but lost the said bid not on merits but due to machinations of some influential officials and disappointed city officials never tried again their luck to bid until now.
Baguio and Benguet, together with the city, provincial and regional offices of the Department of Education, are now finalizing the details of their bid to be submitted to the Palaro Selection Board (PSB) in time for the scheduled bidding by the end of the month.
By Dexter A. See