By REY C. LACHICA
After all her sacrifices, Hidilyn Diaz – the country’s first Olympic gold medal winner – will soon enjoy the life of the rich and famous.
Already assured of at least P33 million cash prizes – Diaz will have a new P14 million condominium unit in Eastwood City – big thanks to property empire tycoon Dr. Andrew L. Tan.
“This epic moment is about 97 years in the making, and this is our own way of saying thanks to Hidilyn Diaz for making us all proud. We believe that it’s just right to give our first-ever Olympic gold medalist a home in our first-ever township, Eastwood City, where she can enjoy the township lifestyle with her family and loved ones,” said Megaworld’s chief strategy officer Kevin L. Tan in a statement.
Apart from the condo unit in Eastwood City, Diaz will also have a brand new house and lot in Tagaytay City – courtesy of Philippine Olympic Committee (POC) President and Tagaytay Rep. Bambol Tolentino.
This came after Diaz ruled the 55-kilogram category in women’s weightlifting event as she set an Olympic record of 224kgs total lift — 127kgs in clean and jerk – also an Olympic mark – and 97kgs in snatch.
In winning the gold, she brought Chinese world record holder Liao Qiuyun down to knees. Kazakhstan’s Chinshanlo Zulfiya finished third.
Under Republic Act (RA) 10699, the government – through its sports agency Philippine Sports Commission (PSC) – will provide a cash incentive of P10 million to gold medal winners in the Olympics.
This was matched by the MVP Sports Foundation (MVPSF) of telecommunication mogul Manny V. Pangilinan and San Miguel Corporation’s Ramon S. Ang.
Deputy Speaker Mikee Romero, a sportsman before joining politics, also pledged an additional P3 million for gold medalists.
The Zamboanga City government also reportedly pledged P2.5 million to Diaz while Phoenix Petroleum through its Siklab Atleta is also set to award P5 million plus free fuel for life.
“I think many of us felt so much pride and joy seeing our flag being raised, and our National Anthem being played,” said Atty. Raymond Zorilla, Phoenix Petroleum senior vice president. (With a report from Waylon Galvez)