Philippines Paralympic Committee Chairman (PPC) Michael Barredo has announced that the 10th ASEAN Para Games (Southeast Asian Games for Disabled Athletes) in Manila will be rescheduled until March 2020 due to lack of funding.
Earlier, the event was scheduled to take place from 18 – 25.1.2020 and is considered the largest sports chain in Southeast Asia hosted by the Philippines after SEA Games 30 – just ended on December 11. However, according to Rappler, the regional disabled sports festival was forced to reschedule due to financial factors after the Philippines Sports Commission (PSC) warned PPC to reconsider because of restrictions on funding and logistics”.
Although they had been working hard to prepare for the ASEAN Para Games for the past year and a half, issues beyond their control forced them to reschedule the event.
The sudden decision of the host Philippines has disappointed many countries. “It’s a pity and quite disappointing that ASEAN Para Games was postponed at the opening time less than a month. We had meetings and planning to prepare for the event, and the host did not express his intention to postpone it before”, said Kevin Wong, who is the Chairman of the Singapore National Paralympic Council (SNPC).
The official complained that the delay of the ASEAN Para Games schedule to March will affect the preparation for the 2020 Paralympics in Tokyo (Japan), in which some athletes may have to participate in other tournaments to qualify join the paralympics.
Meanwhile, the head of Singapore sports team Eric Tseng expressed hope that the problems that the host organizers of the Philippines will face will be resolved quickly. However, like Singapore, other countries must respect the Philippines’ decision, especially when it has just encountered logistics problems at SEA Games 30.
At ASEAN Para Games in Malaysia 2017, Singapore ranked 7th on the medal table with 10 gold, 17 silver, and 24 bronze medals.