By Waylon Galvez
With the rollout of vaccines against COVID-19 in Metro Manila and in nearby provinces, Games and Amusements Board (GAB) chairman Baham Mitra believes more sports events will resume next year.
“We want sports to resume, we think about the livelihood of pro athletes,” said Mitra as he guested Tuesday during the Philippine Sportswriters Association (PSA) Forum online session.
“The future is going to be brighter, ang dami ng bakunado and ang dami pang mababakunahan. In a year’s time mas maganda na but (situation) but let’s not forget na maski bakunado, let’s not put our guards down.”
Mitra said the agency he heads is the licensing authority that sanction professional sports, which include the Philippine Basketball Association (PBA), the country’s football league PFL, the Premier Volleyball League, and the Pilipinas 3×3 to name a few.
It has led the resumption of these pro leagues, as well as various local fights for professional boxers since last year when athletes needed to work and earn a living despite health crisis due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Mitra said that this would be the focal point of discussion in GAB’s third edition of the Professional Sports Summit – an online program set Wednesday, Sept. 29 to be graced by officials and athletes from different sports and leagues.
“The highlight will be the sharing of information, experiences of the different leagues, on how to cope up with the pandemic, mga precautionary measures ng bawat isa, the health protocols, the challenges, and all the things that they did to overcome,” said Mitra.
“The learning is very valuable. Mahirap kasi yan and magastos yan (holding the bubble tournament).”