POC sets election Feb. 23

The Philippine Olympic Committee (POC) will hold an election for the positions of president and chairman, at the Wack Wack Golf and Country Club in Mandaluyong City on February 23.

A memorandum dated Feb. 8 and signed by POC Secretary General Stephen Hontiveros was sent to the International Olympic Committee (IOC) and the National Sports Associations and Athletes, informing them of the election to be held from 1:30 to 2:30 p.m. at the Club’s West Side Grill function room.

“Please be reminded that only the president, secretary general or a duly authorized vice president can represent their NSA during this meeting as stated under Sec. 1(i), Article V of the POC Constitution and By-Laws,” Hontiveros stated in the memorandum.

Registration of voters will be from 11 a.m. to 1:30 p.m.

Hontiveros also sent another memorandum on Feb. 9 regarding the holding of the POC Extraordinary General Assembly meeting in the same venue on Feb. 19.

The assembly is poised to tackle the status of the appealed case on the eligibility of candidates for election as president, the case of the Feb. 9 letter of Pere Miro, deputy director general, National Olympic Committee (NOC) director of the IOC, to the POC president, and discussions on certain issues to be settled before the Feb. 23 election.

“It is very unfortunate to note that disputes related to internal matters, including elections, which should have been resolved by and within your NOC, were submitted to ordinary courts,” Miro stated in his letter.

“As you know, it is our principled position within the Olympic Movement that any sports-related or institutional disputes arising within an NOC, or between an NOC and its members, should be resolved by the competent governing bodies of the NOC, including the NOC General Assembly as the supreme decision-making body of the NOC, in accordance with the NOC Constitution and the applicable provisions of the Olympic Charter,” he added.

“While this should not be interpreted as interference with the judicial processes in your country, it must be recalled that the NOCs are autonomous sports organizations, in accordance with Rule 27.6 of the Olympic Charter, and the NOC General Assembly has the final authority with the NOC to adopt (and, consequently, interpret) the NOC Constitution and to freely elect the officers and members of the NOC Executive Board in accordance with the NOC Constitution (and in line with paragraph 15 of the By-Law to Rules 27 and 28 of the Olympic Charter),” Miro said.

The Pasig Regional Trial Court has nullified the November 2016 elections of the POC for president and chairman.

The court, which ordered the conduct of elections on Feb. 23, said boxing president Ricky Vargas, who ran for president, and cycling president Bambol Tolentino, who ran for chairman, were denied of due process when they were disqualified by the POC election committee. (PNA)