POC lifts PATAFA suspension, Juico is no longer persona non grata

The president of the POC, the representative Bambol Tolentino and the president of the PATAFA, Philip Ella Juico. File photo.

MANILA, Philippines — The Philippine Olympic Committee (POC) announced on Monday that it has rejected its resolution declaring Philip Ella Juico persona non grata, while lifting the suspension of the Philippine Athletics Athletics Association (PATAFA).

“The POC Executive Council has fulfilled its gentleman’s declaration and lifted the two resolutions rendered by the POC on PATAFA,” POC Chairman Rep. Abraham “Bambol” Tolentino said after the emergency meeting of the organization.

“The lifting of the resolution was predicated on the successful mediation between pole vaulter Ernest John ‘EJ’ Obiena and PATAFA,” he explained.

The rift between Obiena and the National Sports Association (NSA) ended last Wednesday after a settlement was agreed following mediation by the Philippine Sports Commission (PSC).

As a result, PATAFA is set to reinstate Obiena into the national team roster and approve his participation in international competitions including the upcoming Southeast Asian Games and Asian Games.

“As expected, there were no objections and the motions to waive should be considered unanimous,” Tolentino said.

The two resolutions were passed twice – the persona non grata in December and ratified by the POC General Assembly and the second, the suspension of PATAFA which Tolentino postponed for ratification by the assembly last week.

“It is therefore with great relief that we announce that the POC lifts as we hereby lift the resolution declaring Mr. Juico persona non grata and also lift the resolution suspending PATAFA as a member of the POC,” Tolentino said.

With both sanctions lifted, Tolentino said Juico and PATAFA would resume their active status with the POC.

“As I have said before, there are no losers, only winners,” he added. “The main winner being the Filipino athlete.”

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