by Kristel Satumbaga
TAGUM, Davao Del Norte – Provincial organizers assured delegates of tighter security, medical and sanitation measures when the 2019 Batang Pinoy Mindanao leg starts today in various venues here.
Giovanni Gulanes, Davao Del Norte’s provincial government department chief on youth and sports development, yesterday said they have already reinforced several measures on competition venues and billeting areas weeks before to ensure the safety of the delegates.
Fumigation process was specifically made at the athletes’ quarters, while visual reminders on dengue prevention were also posted on each room.
The host province also deployed intelligence officers and coordinated with the Philippine National Police and the Armed Forces not only in competition and billeting venues, but also on all choke point areas in light of the current bombings in Mindanao.
They have also followed comprehensive measures in nearby food eateries and markets to ensure that food preparations are clean and safe.
The Philippine Sports Commission has ordered participants to wear official IDs in competition areas and said stricter frisking measures will be implemented.
“We are on track of the situation. Vigilance is important to make sure this event is safe and successful,” said Gulanes.
Close to 3,000 athletes from 89 local government units in the region are currently registered in the weeklong multi-sports event that is part of the PSC’s grassroots program. They will compete in 20 sports.
“This event serves our mission that if children can play together without the biases of who they are, no matter their religions, then peace is possible,” said PSC chairman Butch Ramirez, adding that they are following President Duterte’s mandate to make “sports accessible to all.”
“The central point of the Batang Pinoy, particularly here in Mindanao, is peace-making. We can increase peace, unity and tolerance through sports,” Ramirez said.
“We also believe that every child should be in sports. We should be supporting our local youth athletes,” Davao Del Norte Gov. Anthony Del Rosario added.