“Western Visayas will be the team to beat in this year’s Palarong Pambansa.”
This was stressed yesterday by Atty. Revsee Escobedo, Department of Education Assistant Secretary for Procurement and Project Management Service, during the opening rights of the Western Visayas Regional Athletic Association Meet at the Iloilo Sports Complex.
Speaking before the thousands attending the ceremony, he said that while other regions are looking to improve their standing in this year’s Palaro – with some aiming to finish behind the National Capital Region or CALABARZON (Cavite, Laguna, Batangas, Rizal, and Quezon), he believes that the athletes and coaches of WVRAA will shine brighter and emerge champions in many sports disciplines in the 61st Palaro in the Heritage City of Vigan in Ilocos Sur.
“It’s because Negros Occidental, the Negros Slashers, the formidable Negros Occidental contingent is now under Western Visayas Region. In the history of the Palarong Pambansa, Western Visayas has been the perennial runner-up to NCR,” he said.
It was recalled that in last year’s Palaro, Western Visayas finished No.3 followed by the defunct Negros Island Region (where Negros Occidental was part of) at No.4.
Meanwhile, in another note, he stressed that annual sports event is not only for competition or for producing champions or winning gold medals.
“As one of the components of the K12 program, sports have been the key role in the development of mental, physical, psychological and social fitness of the learners. For this reason, we in the Department of Education make sure that the annual sports event will meet the objectives by mobilizing our modest resources,” he added.
He further explained that one of the provisions in the Palarong Pambansa Act of 2013 is to promote physical education and encourage sports programs to foster self-discipline, teamwork and excellence for the development of a healthy and alert citizenry.
On the other hand, Negros Occidental BM Salvador Escalante introduced the province’s moniker in this weeklong competition. “Western Visayas, Negros Occidental is back. From the sugar capital of the Philippines, the emerging organic farm capital and emerging sporting capital of the country, I would like to present to you the Negros Slashers,” he said.
A total of 3,688 delegates from the 6 provinces in the Western Visayas will compete in 25 events from February 18-23, 2018.*