MANILA, Philippines – House Committee on Public Accounts chair Mike Defensor said that sowing intrigues regarding the Southeast Asian (SEA) Games cauldron will only cause demoralization among Filipino athletes.
Defensor made his remarks in a Media Forum on Friday, 22 November 2019, amid the controversy surrounding the construction of the P55-million SEA Games cauldron (kaldero in tagalog) which was constructed just outside the New Clark City stadium in Tarlac.
“The budget regarding the upcoming regional meet should have been settled after the SEA Games,” Defensor said.
He explained that the cauldron itself amounts P7-million, P17-million was allocated for the development of the monument’s site, while P18-million is required to keep the flame lit throughout the Games.
Defensor questioned the timing of Senate Minority Leader Franklin Drilon for investigating the budget of Sea Games cauldron and warned that it will only create an atmosphere of discontent among athletes who will represent the country in the regional meet.
“Ilagay naman natin sa tamang timing ang pag iimbestiga, wag naman natin ipahiya ang bansa, hindi po to tungkol kay president Duterte, hindi po ito tungkol kahit kanino, tungkol po ito sa ating bansa,” Defensor said.
On Thursday, Senate Minority leader Franklin Drilon, who questioned about the cauldron’s budget, said that he would push for an investigation on the spending of the government and would file a resolution seeking inquiry on how much was really spent for the Philippine hosting of the 30th Sea Games.
“Let’s finish the SEA games first and see what will happen next,” said Defensor. (Lloyd Tagbago/IAMIGO/CNS)