By KRISTEL SATUMBAGA
The Pilipinas Sepak Takraw Federation Inc. (PSTFI) and the Philippine Sports Commission (PSC) condemned the bombing of a bus in Parang, Maguindanao on Sunday that injured several members of a sepak takraw club team.
In an official statement dated April 24, PSTFI president Karen Tanchanco Caballero said: “these terrorist acts have no place in sports and the Sepak Takraw Family feels [for] the families of the victims.”
Injured were members of the Bangsamoro Autonomous Region of Muslim Mindanao (BARMM) who were supposed to compete in an invitational tournament in Dipolog City.
The event is a qualifier for the country’s representative in the ASEAN Schools Games.
Caballero added their grassroots clubs across the country are already in touch with the victims and their relatives to provide assistance.
“Our thoughts and prayers are with the victims of this unjustified attack on the innocents,” the statement read.
In a separate statement, the Philippine Sports Commission (PSC) said: “There is no justification for purposely causing pain on any person, especially one which could possibly become fatal like this bombing.”
“This cowardly act aimed to terrorize the public included athletes among its victims whose budding athletic future are unfairly dimmed by this horrible atrocity,” PSC chairman Butch Ramirez said.
Reports said the explosion occurred about 8:45 a.m. inside a Rural Tours bus parked along the roadside. The bus driver and conductor, as well as other passengers, had a stopover in Barangay Making for breakfast when the incident happened.
Reports said injured members of the team – four athletes and one coach – are now in stable condition.