The Philippines will be hosting the 2019 Southeast Asian (SEA) Games, Foreign Affairs Secretary Alan Peter Cayetano announced on Thursday, a month after a previous statement from the government not to host the sports event.
“I’d like to thank the PSC (Philippine Sports Commission) and the POC (Philippine Olympic Committee), at lahat ng Pilipino na mahal ang sports, because through all these people’s efforts, tuloy na ang hosting natin ng SEA Games,” according to Cayetano, who will also serve as the chairman for the said athletic event.
Cayetano said that planning is still underway, including the prospective venues. He said that the sporting event is an opportunity to showcase the beauty of our country. Among the potential venues include Zambales, Pampanga and Bulacan.
“Zambales is absolutely beautiful, and many people do not know about it. So it’s a sneak peek to the hidden assets and beauty of the Philippines,” he said.
He added that some of the facilities will be rented, leased or borrowed, but there will be some venues that will be built and brand new.
The 2019 SEA Games will also give Filipino athletes the chance to show there talents and will help them prepare for their preparation for 2020 Tokyo Olympics.
The hosting rights for the SEA Games was previously awarded to Brunei, but declined due to the lack of facilities and manpower.
The Philippines last hosted the SEA Games in 2005 where Pinoy athletes recorded 113 gold medals.
Initial List of Sports Approved for 2019 SEA Games
The Southeast Asian Games Federation (SEAGF) executive committee has approved 30 sports in the Southeast Asian Games in 2019. Among the initial sports approved are basketball, volleyball, badminton, baseball, and weightlifting, among others.
— INQUIRER Sports (@INQUIRERSports) May 17, 2018