Sarangani to host regional athletic meet

26 Jan 2016
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ALABEL, Sarangani (January 26, 2016) – Department of Education (DepEd) Sarangani Schools Division Superintendent Isagani Cruz said Sarangani is all set for its first out-of-town hosting of the SOCCSKSARGEN Regional Athletic Association (SRAA) Meet slated to start February 3.

Most of the events of SRAA this year will be staged in Kiamba and spread to its neighboring town Maitum, unlike when it last hosted in 2006 when the venue of all competitions was the Sarangani Capitol Sports Complex in Alabel.

Board Member Cornelio Martinez Jr., chair of the Committee on Youth, Sports Development and Drug Abuse, said the purpose of transferring the yearly hosting of provincial and regional sports competitions is to improve facilities of each town in Sarangani.

Reportedly, the provincial government has already spent for this event a total of P2.3 million from its Special Education Fund taken from the additional 1% tax on real property collected as supplementary funding for public basic education.

Some P1.6 million of this was used for ground preparation and the fixing of billeting schools and other sports venues like the Kiamba Sports Complex and portion of Malalag Central Elementary School in Maitum where individual events like archery would take place.

Cruz expects around 6,000 participants to join SRAA on February 3-7 coming from the nine divisions of General Santos City, Koronadal City, Kidapawan City, Tacurong City, Cotabato City and provinces of Sultan Kudarat, Cotabato, South Cotabato and Sarangani.

Sport events lined up for the meet ranges from athletics, individual events, basketball, softball and soccer. The swimming competition, however, will be staged in South Cotabato Sports Complex since Sarangani does not have its swimming facility ready.

DepEd and the provincial government have partnered for all the groundwork for SRAA.

A series of trainings for the trainers, coaches and other officiating personnel from the nine participating provinces and cities all over Region 12 had also been conducted by DepEd in Kiamba.

SRAA is part of the year-round sports program in Region 12 that is aimed at promoting “sports as an integral part of Basic Education for the holistic development of the SOCCSKSARGEN athletes to become responsible and globally competitive,” former DepEd Region 12 director Allan Farnazo said in a memorandum.

He also said SRAA will likewise “widen the bases for talent identification, selection, recruitment, training and exposure of elementary pupils and secondary students to serve as athletes’ roster to the National Sports Competitions.”

For his part, Kiamba Mayor Raul Martinez has expressed delight that his town will serve as the main venue for the SRAA which coincidentally falls a week before it will kick-off its town fiesta, the Timpuyog Festival, on February 14. (Beverly C. Paoyon/SARANGANI INFORMATION OFFICE)

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