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PSC allots P8 million for airfare

The Philippine Sports Commission (PSC) is spending P8-million alone on the airfare of the 773-strong Philippine delegation to the 29th Southeast Asian Games that kicks off Aug. 19 in Malaysia.

Of the 773, athletes from 37 sports will number 498 and the rest comprised of coaches and NSA officials who have been tasked to improve on the sixth-place finish the Philippines had two years ago in Singapore with a measly collection of 29 gold medals.

SEAG Task Force chief Tom Carrasco said flag-carrier Philippine Airlines will ferry the athletes and coaches to Kuala Lumpur.

Members of the secretariat and medical staff are leaving way before the opening ceremonies on Aug. 19 although the biggest wave of delegates – almost 400 – leaves on Aug. 17 and 18.

The P8-million is just a drop in the bucket since the PSC has earmarked close to P400 million for the actual participation and buildup of the athletes.

PSC chairman William ‘Butch’ Ramirez insists that the agency provided almost all of the NSA’s needs in the hopes of a much better performance.

The Philippines is in dire need of a breakthrough performance in the SEAG as it has fared miserably the last ten years.