Since the time that I have been blogging about Running and other related topics and subjects on the development of local athletes in the National Sports Excellence Program for the Elite Runners and local talents with potentials to become included in the National Pool ofElite Athletes, I have always thought and wrote about the creation of a National Sports Academy to address this matter. Every time that this “idea” would come into discussion and part of recommendation for our better ranking in the Southeast Asian Games, Asian Games, and the Summer Olympic Games is when our political leaders and sports analysts try to find out what is the problem in our Elite Sports Program and why we are always at the bottom rank among our Southeast Asian and Asian countries. And up to this time in the history of the Summer Olympic Games, the Philippines has never attained its FIRST Gold Medal. It is becoming a recurring discussion, investigation, and Senate/Congressional Hearings on how we would be able to have the BEST Athletes for International Competitions and such investigations were always done after the past International Games were held but after one week, all the discussions/investigations and recommendations were all forgotten. This cycle is being repeated every two years and four years when the SEA Games, Asian/Olympic Game are held, respectively.
Our National Pride was saved when we hosted the 2019 Southeast Asian Games (last year) where we ranked as the Number One among the SEA countries and hosted a top-notch caliber of accommodation and hospitality to our visitors. Such “bravado” on the part of the National Leadership to “salvage” the hosting of the 2019 SEA Games from Brunei on the later part of 2015 which was initially planned to use our existing Sports Facilities/Stadiums and with the addition of the Philippine Arena had made way for the Duterte Administration to create a specific Place or Area where the 2019 SEA Games would be held. Thus, the New Clark City was created in a record time of two years as the site of the 2019 SEA Games. Its structures and facilities for Sports Events are high-tech and very modern that it can compete or better than the facilities for the Asian Games and Summer Olympic Games. Bottomline, we should always remember that we have attained a level of “The Best In Excellence” as a Nation in Sports and the “Best In Hospitality” as part of our National Culture and Trait. Let us continue these in the years ahead.
This month of June 2020 and after 7 months from the being the Number 1 in the SEA Games, President Duterte had signed Republic Act No. 11470 which provides for the creation of the National Academy of Sports last June 9, 2020 in a simple ceremony at the Presidential Guest House in Davao City. “The Academy aims to develop aspiring Filipino athletes who are in the secondary level or high school and have demonstrated potential to excel in VARIOUS SPORTS by providing WORLD-CLASS for training and at the same time, continue their education”. The Academy shall be attached with the Department of Education in close coordination with the Philippine Sports Academy. The Academy shall be established at the New Clark City Sports Complex in Capas, Tarlac using its structures, facilities, and accommodation for the students.
This my personal opinion on the creation of the National Academy of Sports (NAS). Finally, one of my ideas in the development of Sports Excellence had been realized. It is a small FIRST step but it is really BIG in terms of providing continuity and permanence in instilling sports excellence among our local athletes. However, I have yet to read the whole content of this Law and find out the details on its Organization, Administration and Operation. I will be writing and posting updates on this Law once I get hold a copy of it. It will be a good source of discussion in my future posts.
Thank you for reading!