fifa, the pff and change

Starting an accelerated phase for Philippine Football Development, the FIFA Performance Management Programme can be the catalyst for Philippine Football to achieve its rightful place in Asia and World Football. You have potential – make the best use of it.

– FIFA Organization Review Team for the Philippines, 2012

PASIG CITY, Philippines – Recognizing the need to build institutional capacity to handle the growing needs of the Philippine football community, the Philippine Football Federation (PFF) wrote FIFA last year and requested an organizational review to assist PFF in identifying its weaknesses and areas for improvement. FIFA responded by sending a 4-man organizational review team under the auspices of PERFORMANCE, the Football Management Programme of FIFA. The Asian Football Confederation (AFC) also sent an observer.

The team included 2 members of the FIFA Development Office Kuala Lumpur and 2 FIFA Consultants including a former General Secretary of the Football Association of Ireland and a technical consultant from DFB – the German football association. The head of the AFC’s Vision Asia Project also came as an observer.

The week-long review was comprehensive in both the depth and breadth of the areas covered. Various stakeholders of Philippine football were invited to share their thoughts and suggestions. This list included representatives of the POC, PSC, media practitioners, Provincial Football Association (PFA) officials, major corporate supporters of PFF, UAAP, NCAA, UFL and officials of the PFF itself.

Early on, the FIFA Review Team made it clear that they wanted a no-holds barred and candid exchange with the invited participants. To facilitate such, separate meetings were held with the various stakeholders to identify their specific concerns and issues. The preliminary results of the organizational review reflected the environment that the FIFA team encouraged. The initial recommendations are far-reaching – calling for no less than a fundamental and drastic overhaul of existing PFF statutes. These recommendations reflect FIFA’s principle of Football being for ALL.

PFF President Mariano Araneta, Jr. signaled the direction of PFF with regard to these recommendations by saying that now is the time for change. A change that will make PFF more effective and responsive to the needs of the entire Philippine football community and not just to a narrow audience. A change that will continue the drive for transparency and accountability not just within PFF but all the way down to its member associations. A change that will make PFF more inclusive rather than exclusive.

Some of the key FIFA recommendations include the following:

Membership. One of the more contentious and possibly controversial recommendations is to open up the PFF membership roster. Currently, only Provincial Football Associations are eligible for regular membership to the PFF. FIFA recommended that membership should be based on the wider football needs of the Philippines. Some of those organizations identified for regular membership included the NCAA & UAAP, the UFL, the Armed Forces of the Philippines, RIFA and a coaches association.

Organizational structure. FIFA pointed out the potential for confusion with the lack of clarity as to the roles of the internal bodies of the PFF. It was recommended that there be a clear line separating the members of the PFF Board of Governors and their strategic purpose with the heads of the line departments of the PFF who carry out the day to day operational activities of the organization.

Reduce Board-Level Committees. Given the logistical challenges of the archipelagic nature of the Philippines, FIFA recommended that the number of Board-Level Committees be reduced to five. This will eliminate non-functioning committees and allow board members to focus on key areas. It also recommended that membership to these committees should be expanded to include external experts such as finance and banking professionals for the Finance Committee, FIFA Referees for the Referees Committee and so on.

Strengthening of PFF Secretariat. To build additional capacity for he organization in view of the rapid growth of football in the Philippines, FIFA recommended additional full-time and senior-level staff for Finance, Marketing and Communications. Corollary to this, FIFA will soon equip the PFF with the FIFA Football Management System (FMS), an end to end IT enterprise system specifically for football which will be customized for the needs of PFF. It will have the ability to house the PFF database of players, coaches, referees and others. FMS will also have an accounting and finance module for use by PFF Finance. Other functionalities including competition scheduling and referee assignment are being eyed for inclusion in the system.

Limited capacity of PFAs. The limited capacity of some PFAs to fulfill their responsibilities of organizing competitions and implementing development programmes was cited by FIFA as a negative. To address this, the PFF will be requesting that FIFA conduct its FIFA Administration Course in the Philippines. Having said this, it was also stressed that PFAs should take it upon themselves to build up their capacities. It was noted that in certain cases, FIFA cited instances where the withdrawal of support for member associations was warranted given the lack of progress in their areas.

Cooperation with the UFL. FIFA sees the development of an elite league and clubs as a major development focus. In line with this, it cited the need for closer cooperation between the PFF and the UFL pointing out that there are many areas of overlap and mutual interest. A formal club regulation system is also a requirement that needs to be put in place.

Others. Other areas identified as needing improvement and where solutions are being identified include refereeing, beach football and futsal, women’s football and government relationships.

Members of the PFF Board of Governors have already indicated their willingness to consider and implement these changes as proposed by FIFA. The next step will be for implementation visits by FIFA consultants to the Philippines to monitor progress with regard to the changes proposed. On-going reviews by consultants and functional experts will also be a part of the implementation plan. It is expected that the entire process will take 2 to 3 years before the full benefits of this capacity building exercise is felt.

A lot of these changes will necessitate the amendment of PFF’s statutes including its By-Laws. This can only be done by the PFF Congress. To facilitate this process, a Special Congress could prospectively be called to tackle these changes. As FIFA itself is in the process of reviewing the FIFA Standard Statutes, the FIFA team recommended that PFF await the completion of this before initiating the process of amending its own statutes. FIFA’s review is expected to be completed this year.

PFF was also reminded that FIFA support will be dependent on PFF implementation of the recommendations.

FIFA congratulated the PFF for the significant progress that has been made over the past year both on and off the pitch. It cautioned, however, that a lot more needs to be done for the Philippines “to achieve its rightful place in Asia and World Football.”


for the pff – it’s all about the kids

Ang kabataan ang pag-asa ng bayan.

– Jose P. Rizal

SAN CARLOS CITY – I have retreated to this sleepy city of over 100,000 to serve as a speaker for a workshop for the Grassroots Development Officers of the member Provincial Football Associations of the Philippine Football Federation (PFF). Getting to San Carlos from Manila takes riding a plane to Silay City (north of Bacolod) and a close to 2 hour land trip going up and over the mountains which straddle the Negros Translink Eco-tourism Highway linking Bacolod City and San Carlos City.

I had heard about San Carlos City and its development as a center of football in the country particularly at the youth level. Players from this city populate teams of the Negros Occidental Football Association in the various competitions of the PFF. The long line of notable players that it has produced is evidence of the strength of its grassroots and youth development programs, the most recent of which is Jinggoy Valmayor of the UP Fighting Maroons, Diliman FC and the Philippine Men’s National Team to the recent Southeast Asian Games.

It quickly becomes apparent to me as to why this phenomenon had and continues to happen. Right in front of the City Hall is a bevy of football pitches that are apparently also segregated as to use by age-groups. The long-term support of the city for football is evidenced by an annual appropriation of P1 million for football alone. And, I can say it has been well-spent.

The man who directs all this is John Carmona, PFF’s Technical Director for the Visayas. Coach John’s soft-spoken manner belies his passion for the game. His daughter is a member of the U-14 Girls National Team and as she participated in the mini-festival that I observed, it was easy enough to see why.

The Grassroots Development Officers’ (GDO) Workshop is the culmination of the preparations for the country-wide roll-out of the Kasibulan Grassroots Development Program of the PFF. Through a combination of classroom and practical modules, the GDOs from 33 provinces in the country, are walked through the intricacies of Kasibulan as the final step in what has been an almost year-long training program for these GDOs. The 9-day workshop is rigorous with instructors from the PFF and the Japan Football Association meticulously going through each little detail including where to put the water stations during a Festival of Football. The GDOs are refreshed about the theory and practice of running a successful grassroots program, the financial aspects of the program, the manner of engaging Local Government Units and local Department of Education officials, among others.

As I watch, observe, participate, ask and answer questions and engage in small talk with the participants, I am heartened to be present in this gathering of some of the best youth coaches in the country. It also makes you realize the magnitude of this program when everything is rolled out – up to 198 Festivals of Football in up to 33 provinces in the country. At the same time, it makes you appreciate even more the effort of PFF’s Technical Department led by Coach Aris Caslib with this meticulous preparation.

Kasibulan, which is supported by Pagcor and the Asian Football Development Project, will start its full roll-out in April and will end in October. The final schedules and the mechanics for participation will be out next week. The preparation phase is almost over, it’s almost time to get down to business.

I left San Carlos City excited and with a sense of validation that we are ready. I also leave with the thought that, no matter whatever else is happening in the world of Philippine football, at the end of the day – it’s all about the kids.

what it is? between the sexual harassment & racist comment surrounding the azkals

by Rick Olivares

(originally posted on bleachersbrew –

What is it? Or what it is. Let’s get this out of the way… I am a firm believer in a strong grassroots football program that will give chances for our homegrown players to be world-class. I also believe that match officials should be respected in and out of the locker room. And I am unequivocally against sexual harassment and racism. I have experienced the latter while working abroad and truly bristle at the mere mention of it but this is not about me. It’s about this seemingly interminable complaint of Ms. Cristina Ramos about being sexually harassed by a couple of members of the Philippine Men’s Football National Team during a routine inspection of the players inside their locker room prior to the recent friendly match against Malaysia.

I grimaced when I heard of the incident. Oh, no. I thought to myself. What happened? Is this for real?

When I read of her complaint that came out in media, I once more grimaced. Why did this happen, I asked? Is this for real?

One thing is for sure and that is we do not know all the facts and whatever is out there is pretty much one-sided. Again I do not condone sexual harassment or racism in any form but I do believe that due process and protocol should be followed. Having worked with Ms. Ramos in the local organizing committee for the past two home matches of the national team, she was a joy to work with for her thoroughness, candor, and her energy. She reiterated time and again to the PFF Local Organizing Committee (LOC) of which I was a part of about adhering to the rules as well as following protocol and processes. And in my opinion, there lies part of the problem.

Immediately after her inspection of the Philippine national team, she seemed distressed and upset. She went to the match commissioner’s room where some of the secretariat and the LOC members were to inform them about “being disrespected”. She was advised to include in her (match commissioner’s) report her complaint. The following day, she met up with Philippine Football Federation (PFF) president Mariano V. Araneta during the PFF-UFL (United Football League) Fellowship Night (and was advised) to do the same.

Now what shocked everyone was why and how she filed the report to the Asian Football Confederation (AFC) and not the PFF. She said that the PFF office was closed the following day so she took it to AFC.

For someone who says she is a stickler for protocol she sure broke it right there. If her complaint is being blocked and whitewashed locally, I can understand taking it to the press. But it is not. The PFF hired her to serve as Match Commissioner not the AFC. And as per Fédération Internationale de Football Association (FIFA) and AFC rules, Match Commissioners should not talk to the media.

In the AFC Guidelines, Section C Article 5 of Common provisions for Match Officials (page 16), it is written that, “AFC Match Officials shall adopt a reserved attitude towards the media and shall not pass comment on the referees and assistant referees or any of their decisions. Neither may they make any forecasts about forthcoming decisions by the Disciplinary Committee in connection with any incidents that have occurred at the game.”

In the AFC’s Match Commissioners’ seminar last January 17-20 in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, it is written in the Basic Principles (section B5 Communication), “Absolutely no interviews may be granted while on assignment.”

Two days after the incident, she met with the PFF’s Araneta and General Secretary Rolly Tulay about the incident and it was there that she informed them that she had already informed the media about her complaint. I know media officers are not supposed to talk about any incidents for up to 48 hours after the end of their assignment and I don’t know if that applies to Match Commissioners but nevertheless, this – again no one is whitewashing anything – matter should have been resolved from within. In that same meeting, she also asked if the PFF was willing, to be assigned as Match Commissioner in the next home match so she could discipline the team!

Her complaint also came out with the players not in town and unable to defend themselves. If the players are found guilty then I say that they should be punished in a manner that fits their folly. Whatever the rulings and findings are, I would like to think that they will be based on facts and whatever legalese you might want to thrown in. But as it is, they were already tried by publicity.

Ms. Ramos has gone on the offensive in media and social media about the issue. Now here are a few things that I have to throw into the mix to gain further perspective on things.

On Friday, February 24, five days before the match against Malaysia, a Pep Rally for the Azkals was held at the SM Megamall. After the match, the LOC and the players trooped to the nearby Kenny Rogers restaurant for dinner. During that dinner, Ms. Ramos blurted out to the committee (the Azkals were seated nearby but I don’t think they heard the diatribe), “What’s with this, ‘I’m from Chinatown, New York’ and ‘I’m from Spain’. Why don’t they just say that they are Filipino?” She then asked the team’s liaison officer Patrick Ace Bright if the team was put through etiquette and public speaking courses.

I answered her, “What is wrong with what they said?” Obviously, she was referring to Azkals midfielders Lexton Moy and Angel Guirado.

I told her not to take this out of context. During the fan session of the Pep Rally, LOC head Richard Joson asked the players to introduce themselves. Azkals wingback Roel Gener led it off.

“I am Roel Gener and taga-Barotac Nuevo, Iloilo ako.”

That was followed by Iranian-Filipino Misagh Bahadoran who said that although he was born in the Philippines, he didn’t speak English and Filipino well.

The third player to introduce himself was Ed Sacapaño: “Ako si Eduard Sacapaño at taga-Bacolod, Negros ako.”

Moy, the fourth player to speak, followed the pattern of introduction while Guirado was one of the last.

Now this might be a stand-alone episode. Yet it also might not because she also decried the team’s “Fil-foreigner flavor” to many of us in the LOC and anyone involved in local football willing to listen. In fact, during the post-Malaysia match press conference, she spoke with one of the press officers about how the team should be represented by locals and not the Fil-foreigners.

I cited how the German National Football Team is beset with similar problems with the influx of players of foreign descent like Mesut Ozil (who has Turkish roots), Sami Khedira (whose father is Tunisian), Mario Gomez (whose father is Spanish), and Jerome Boateng (whose father is Ghanaian and his brother Kevin Prince plays for the Black Stars). They are not alone in that respect. France has featured a multi-racial squad for years with some born domestically while others originating from former colonies. Are they violating any rules? No they are not. It is prescribed not just with FIFA but also with almost every other sports body in the world. We are unlike other countries like Qatar that opt for naturalization as opposed to utilizing citizens with dual citizenship.

How about Paulino Alcantara? He is Spanish-Filipino and yet he played for both the Spanish and Philippine flags. Isn’t that balimbing? But no. The rules of that time said it was possible. Personally, I feel about him the way Argentineans feel about Lionel Messi (if you don’t know what that is I recommend that you read up on that). But if they say he is the greatest Filipino footballer ever, well…

Incredibly, sometime last year, Ms. Ramos was raving to me about Eduardo Teus, a Filipino who played for Real Madrid! She even took a picture of it and placed it on her Facebook account. I have no idea if Teus’ mother was Filipina but he was born in the Philippines. But former basketball star, Alex Compton, who was born in Makati City, is not considered a Filipino and was refused play in the PBA until he was in the twilight of his career.

When the national team arrives, Moy and Guirado will be given 48 hours to file their reports about the incident. The PFF, which has followed protocol on this situation, says that this has gone on too long and they hope it can come to a resolution. Unfortunately, it doesn’t look like this one is going to end any time soon.

Not when it was compounded by this ugly “racist” comment that GMA7 host/anchor Arnold Clavio uttered during the show, “Unang Hirit.”

Who is a true Filipino? History books have shown us that the first the first occupants of the Philippines were the Callao and Tabon men, the Negrito tribes, and those who left Borneo, China, India, and other countries. Having been colonized and occupied by the Spanish, Dutch, English, and Americans, ours is a mixed race. I find it funny that Clavio thinks the “kayumanggi” race is who we are? Should the Aetas be insulted by his comment?

Someone asked if Lexton Moy and Angel Guirado were given a chance to suit up for the national teams of the United States or Spain, would they play there? I think you go where you think it is best for you. Just like many of our countrymen who opt to work abroad as opposed to staying home. Where is it best for you? And why stop at football? Take a look at pro basketball as well as our national teams for tennis, swimming, and what else – they have many Filipinos of foreign lineage.

We are quick to embrace anyone with an ounce of Filipino blood as Filipino. You saw that during American Idol. And we see that in showbiz. How many are of foreign lineage? But when someone, say like Matthew Hartmann or Anjanette Abayari does something wrong, we say, “Go back to where you came from?” And we add, “Ah, kasi puti o Amerikano.” Where did that come from?

The world is a much smaller place. Made smaller by immigration, technology, and business. Look at the New York Knicks’ wunderkind, Jeremy Lin. Will he crack the lineup of the US Men’s National Basketball Team? For his position, point guard, the Americans are at least four deep. So does he play for his parents’ country of origin, Taiwan?

I think we should be a little more broad-minded when it comes to these matters. That and adhering to protocol rather than trial by publicity. The last I checked, everyone is innocent until proven guilty.

Official response of GMA7 to PFF Complaint Re: Arnold Clavio

The written response of GMA7 to the complaint filed by the Philippine Football Federation was received at the PFF offices today.

16 March 2012

PFF House of Football
27 Danny Floro corner Captain Henry Javier Sts.
Oranbo, 1600 Pasig City


PFF LegalCounsel


We acknowledge receipt of your letter addressed to GMA Network, lnc. President and COO Gilberto Duavit Jr. concerning the Philippine Football Federation’s dissatisfaction with Arnold Clavio and other hosts of the morning program “Unang Hirit” in its episode last March 13, 2012.

ln said episode, a news item reported on the national football team, the Philippine Azkals, winning versus lndia on March 11, 2012 and the coming do-or-die match on the 13th of March, which at that time was against Tajikistan. lt was mentioned in the news report that the Azkals’ win came in the middle of a sexual harassment complaint filed by Ms. Cristina Ramos against two membersofthe team -Lexton Moy and AngelGuirado.

As you correctly pointed out in your letter, the news report was followed by an unscripted discussion among the hosts of the morning program which is the usual format of the show. We wish to clarify that the perceived grievances arising from the statements of our hosts were not part of a news report, which is limited to statements of facts and does not allow the personal opinion of our news anchors. Rather, your complaints stem from the comments made by our hosts during the commentary segment of the show wherein hosts are given the opportunity to freely exchange views and express their opinions.

We regret that you misunderstood Arnold Clavio’s comments. Arnold Clavio was referring to culture, not citizenship when he uttered, “Hindi ko kayo ka-kultura- Kasi wala dito (points to heart), wala dito (points to head). Hindi naman kayo Pilipino, nagpapanggap lang kayong kayumanggi. Hindi kayo dito lumaki. Mahirop yan.”

As explained by Arnold Clavio, he was merely commenting that, in his opinion, some players of the Azkals may have not completely imbibed the Filipino culture which puts great importance in its respect for women. Ms. Cristina Ramos, a former Philippine Olympic Committee President and the daughter of a former President of the Republic of the Philippines, was compelled to bring her grievance of sexual harassment before the Philippine Football Federation due to the alleged improper actions of two football players. The issue of sexual harassment is the root and essence of Arnold Clavio’s comments and the comments as well of the other hosts of the morning program.

For your reference, below is the statement issued on March 14, 2012 by Arnold Clavio concerning the matter:

Mga igan, nakakalungkot na may negatibong reaksyon ang naginq pahayag ko tungkol sa Philippine Azkals kaugnay ng sexual harrassment complaint ni Ms. Cristy Ramos. Wala po akong ganoong intensyon. Ang isyu po rito ay sexual harassment at kung may nagamit man po akong mga salita na hindi angkop, nagpapakumbaba po ako at humihingi ng pang-unawa. Dun naman po sa mga kasama kong nanindigan laban sa sexual harrassment, maraming salamat po. Seryoso pong isyu ito na dapat bantayan.

Our hosts were merely exercising their constitutional right to express their opinions even if others may not necessary subscribe to said opinions. And we acknowledge and respect such right of our hosts, much the same way that we respect the right of the general public and of your organization to freely articulate your views and opinions, so long as said opinions do not violate the law.

Contrary to your claim that Arnold Clavio’s statements are racist, discriminatory, libelous and malicious, we do not find anything racist, discriminatory libelous or malicious in the comments made by Arnold Clavio and his co-hosts. Consequently, we cannot accede to your demands.

We trust that we have clarified our position on this matter.

Very truly yours,

Ma. Luz P. Delfin
Vice President, Legal Affairs


GMA Network response to PFF statement about Arnold Clavio

In the interest of balance and fairness, reprinted below is the full text of the “official” response from GMA Network to the written complaint of the Philippine Football Federation about Arnold Clavio as taken from the GMA News Online website. Note that the PFF has not received an official written response from the GMA Network to its written complaint (not a statement) addressed to GMA Network, Inc. to the attention of its President Gilberto R. Duavit, Jr..

Kamakailan, inireklamo ng sexual harassment ang dalawang miyembro ng Philippine Azkals ni dating Philippine Olympic Committee President Cristy Ramos, anak ni dating Pangulong Ramos.

Nitong Martes, napag-usapan po sa Unang Hirit ang sexual harassment complaint ni Cristy Ramos laban sa dalawang miyembro ng Azkals kung saan nagbigay ang ilang hosts ng kani-kanilang opinyon.

Kahapon, nakatanggap ang GMA Network ng liham mula sa Philippine Football Federation o PFF kung saan inireklamo ang mga komentaryo nina Arnold Clavio at Rhea Santos sa kanilang programa.

Nais po linawin ng GMA Network na ang mga inirereklamong pahayag ay hindi bahagi ng aming news reporting kung saan tanging mga statement of facts ang ibinabalita at kung saan walang puwang ang pagbibigay ng opinyon ng mga host. Ang mga inireklamong pahayag ay unscripted discussion ng Unang Hirit hosts sa commentary segment ng programa kung saan sila ay nagpalitan ng opinyon at nagbigay ng kani-kanilang pananaw tungkol sa naturang issue.

Nalulungkot po ang GMA Network na iba ang naging intindi ng Philippine Football Federation sa mga sinabi ni Arnold. Ang pinapatungkulan ni Arnold ay hindi kung Filipino citizen o kung may lahing Pilipino ang mga Azkals kundi kung naisapuso at naisaisip ba nila ang kulturang Pinoy.

Ang  issue na tinalakay sa Unang Hirit ay sexual harassment—isang mahalagang issue kung saan matindi ang paninindigan ng mga host. Meron pong karapatan sina Arnold, Rhea at iba pang host na ihayag ang kanilang opinyon, isang karapatang pinoprotektahan ng ating Saligang Batas. Sang-ayon man kami o hindi sa kanilang opinyon, ang karapatan nilang ihayag ito ay kinikilala ng GMA Network tulad ng aming pagrespeto sa karapatan ng publiko at maging ng PFF na maghayag ng kanilang opinyon—basta ang nasabing opinyon ay hindi labag sa batas.

Sa liham ng Philippine Football Federation, sinabi nilang racist, discriminatory, libelous at malicious ang mga pahayag nina Arnold Clavio at Rhea Santos. Pero ang GMA Network po, walang nakitang racist, walang discriminatory, walang libelous at walang malicious sa mga komentaryo nina Arnold at Rhea.

Text of PFF Complaint to GMA7 Re: Arnold Clavio

To attribute it to “crab-mentality” and move on would be an easy way out. To do so, however, would be to yield the high ground without even the whimper of a feeble protest. To do so would be to lend credence to unanswered untruths which will only serve to embolden these “journalists” to continue to tarnish the work of many who have sought neither publicity nor reward for the silent work that they have done.

Shirt badge/Association crest

14 March 2012
GMA Network Center
EDSA corner Timog Avenue
Quezon City
Attention: Mr. GILBERTO R. DUAVIT, JR.
President & COO



The PHILIPPINE FOOTBALL FEDERATION (PFF) would like to lodge a formal complaint with your organization for the racist, discriminatory, libelous and malicious statements of your Program Host, ARNOLD CLAVIO and his other co-hosts, during the nationwide broadcast of your News & Public Affairs Program “Unang Hirit” last 13 March 2012.

After reading a news report on the Philippines vs. India match (March 11, 2012), the Philippines vs. Tajikistan match scheduled on March 13, 2012, and a news report on how the members of the Philippine National Football Team (Men’s) focus on their scheduled games despite the sexual harassment complaint filed by CRISTINA RAMOS against Philippine team players LEXTON MOY and ANGEL GUIRADO, the following statements, among others, were uttered by your host ARNOLD CLAVIO, thus:

Host Rhea Santos – “Kailangan masampulan eh…”

Host Arnold Clavio – “Kaya talagang ano na. Aral na sa inyo yan, ang yayabang nyo akala nyo. Porke’t dinadagsa kayo ng mga fans, ang gugugwapo nyo eh.”

“Parang God’s gift to women”

“Alam mo lahat.. lahat nang… nakuwento nga ni Cristina at nang dalawa nyang kasama. Lahat ginawa para ipaalam na may babaeng papasok sa locker, ilang katok nga sila eh. Eh malapit na yung match eh. Kailangan ma-check na yung dalawang koponan. Eh nauna yung Philippine team bago yung Malaysian… na team.

“Ngayon nag-sorry para sa isa daw nilang kasamahan. Saan ka nakakita ng Azkal na may suso? Wala naman akong…. anong cup B? Maybe a cup B sa isang kasama?

“Palusot na lang…”

“Sana nag-sorry, sorry na lang talaga, di ba? Parang…”

“Hindi ko kayo ka-kultura. Kasi wala dito (pointing to his chest)…. at wala dito (pointing to his head)…”

“Hindi naman kayo Pilipino. Nagpapanggap lang kayong kayumanggi. Hindi kayo dito lumaki”…

“Mahirap yun….. Insensitive.”

“Para maging aral.”

“Congratulations. Kasi hiwalay naman ito sa ginagawa nilang pakikipaglaban. So, good luck din sa inyong susunod na laban para mapunta kayo sa Final 4 ha. Na bihira pong marating nang Pilipinas sa matagal na panahon.”

“Alam naman nila yung mga sexcapades nila sa isa’t isa eh, di ba? Sino ba nag-penicillin.. Alam naman nila yun.”

“Akala siguro lahat sila gusto silang matikman siguro… makasama…Diyos ko.”

Your TV Host ARNOLD CLAVIO’s declarations that the members of the Philippine Men’s National Football Team “are not Filipinos” and “are only pretending to be Filipinos” are not only libelous and defamatory to the good name and reputation of the PFF and the Filipino players comprising the Men’s National Team now playing with their hearts for “flag and country” at the AFC Challenge Cup in Kathmandu, Nepal. They are also verbal statements of a racist nature and constitute malicious, contemptuous, discriminatory and denigratory remarks concerning race and origin that offend the dignity of the Filipino players and Filipinos who are similarly situated.

ARNOLD CLAVIO has made those scathing and offensive remarks with reckless disregard of the truth or falsity of his statements. In association football, only citizens of the country can be a member of the Representative “A” Team of the country, i.e., its National Team. In making his scurrilous statements, CLAVIO made it appear that PFF has selected persons who are not Filipino citizens to be members of and play for the Philippine National Team. This subjects all Philippine National Teams (not only the Men’s National Team) to doubts by international organizations, spectators and opposing national teams as to the Filipino citizenship, and therefore eligibility, of the Philippine team players. It also puts the name and reputation of the Philippines and the PFF in disrepute. CLAVIO obviously does not know (and neither he nor your program staff did not care to check) that only Filipinos can play in the Philippine National Football Team. Indeed, weeks prior to any international tournament a country has to submit to the organizer a list of its National Team players with proof of their citizenship or nationality (e.g. passports).

The members of the Philippine National Team now playing in Nepal at the AFC Challenge Cup are Filipinos just like your Unang Hirit hosts Arnold Clavio, Rhea Santos, Connie Sison and Lyn Ching-Pascual. Some of the current members of the Philippine Men’s Football Team have either a Filipina mother or a Filipino father, thus qualifying them to be natural-born Filipino citizens. One can notice the obvious discomfort of even CLAVIO’s co-host Lyn Ching-Pascual when he confidently uttered the words “Hindi naman kayo Pilipino. Nagpapanggap lang kayong kayumanggi….”

ARNOLD CLAVIO also discriminates against the Philippine national team players who, for one reason or another, grew up or partly grew up outside the Philippines when he uttered the words “Hindi kayo dito lumaki”. This constitutes disparaging and demeaning remarks against Filipino children of Filipinos who are compelled by circumstances to work and live abroad with their children. His bias against Filipinos who grew up abroad is utterly shocking and is not expected to be blurted out by a TV host of your respected and reputable organization. Many Filipinos, including our own President Benigno S. Aquino, partly grew up abroad by force of circumstances. Are they less Filipino than those who grew up entirely in the Philippines?

ARNOLD CLAVIO is also guilty of sexist remarks and sex-related innuendo leveled against the Philippine National Team players when he uttered the words “Alam naman nila yung mga sexcapades nila sa isa’t isa eh, di ba? Sino ba nag-penicillin… Alam naman nila yun.”…..“ Akala siguro lahat sila gusto silang matikman siguro… makasama…Diyos ko.” Added to that statement was host Rhea Santos’ statement that “[y]ung mga babae…kasi porke guwapo… sikat… minsan halos itapon na nila yung mga sarili doon sa mga lalaki” that operate to demean and disparage Filipino women, in general, and the Filipino women supporters of the Philippine Men’s National Team. It must be noted that your Unang Hirit program caters to all age groups.

After uttering the above-stated libelous, racist and discriminatory remarks, and after obviously reading an idiot board or reminder from somebody (not covered by the camera), ARNOLD CLAVIO, congratulated the team and wished them luck during their next game so they could qualify for the semifinals of the Challenge Cup, a situation which CLAVIO himself admitted is seldom attained ‘”by the Philippines”. Nonetheless, the unquantifiable damage and injury to the PFF and the Philippine Men’s National Football Team has already been inflicted by the scurrilous and discriminatory words emanating from your TV host ARNOLD CLAVIO.

As you are aware, the matter of sexual harassment complaint by Cristina Ramos against Philippine players Lexton Moy and Angel Guirado is now pending before the PFF Disciplinary Committee which has primary jurisdiction over the complaint. While your organization may report news concerning the matter, we and the public expect that no racist, discriminatory, sexist, or disparaging remarks that offend the dignity of persons or organizations or maliciously defame persons or organizations are made by your hosts and reporters.

We thus lodge this complaint and protest with GMA NETWORK, INC. and demand that, (i) your organization impose, after requisite proceedings, the appropriate sanction on your TV host ARNOLD CLAVIO; (ii) your organization and/or ARNOLD CLAVIO rectify, among others, his discriminatory, racist and libelous assertions that members of the Philippine Men’s National Football Team are not Filipinos and are only pretending to be Filipinos; and, (iii) your organization and/or ARNOLD CLAVIO issue a written apology to the PFF and the Philippine Men’s National Football Team which should also be forthwith read and given prominence in your News & Public Affairs TV program, “Unang Hirit”.

We are thankful that in one way or another, your organization has helped in the promotion of football in the Philippines. We all know that encouraging the Filipino youth to engage in sports in general or play football in particular contributes to nation-building. We however strongly protest the previously cited statements of your Unang Hirit Hosts ARNOLD CLAVIO and RHEA SANTOS.
Very truly yours,
PFF Legal Counsel

kasibulan sa iloilo

Opening remarks at launch of Kasibulan in Iloilo while pinch-hitting for PFF President Mariano “Nonong” Araneta, Jr.

In behalf of PFF President Mariano V. Araneta, Jr., I would like to thank all of you for having us here at this Iloilo Football Clinic and the soft launch of Kasibulan in Iloilo held with the support of the US Embassy – Manila. It is indeed heartwarming to see the result of the effort and the organization that has gone into putting this clinic over the past several days. To that – hats off to Iloilo Football Association (IFA) President Joseph Gensaya, IFA General Secretary Bob Javellana and the rest of the IFA. Kami sa Philippine Football Federation particularly ang staff sang Kasibulan Grassroots Development Program can only do so much in terms of conceptualizing, planning and directing the program. Ang success sang aton nga national grassroots program ultimately depends on the provincial football associations nga naga-implementar sang programa. As you know we re-launched the Kasibulan Grassroots Program last month sa Calamba, Laguna. Kasibulan is aimed at kids 6 to 12 years old. Ang event naton the past 3 days is only a dry-run para sa full-blown launch sang Kasibulan sa Iloilo. We will do this within the next 2 months for this program which will be a year-round program with 6 Festivals of Football. Ang aton ginapangabay sa programa nga ini is to discover new talents while bata pa sila. Hopefully will be able to discover the new Chieffy Caligdong, Ian Araneta and even Phil Younghusband through this program. Ang success sang aton Philippine Azkals indi ta ma-sustain kon indi ta magsugod subong sa pagpangita sang mabulos sa ila.  Isa pa ka goal sang Kasibulan program is to help the Philippines qualify for the 2019 U-17 Junior World Championships. Wala lang ta kabalo pero basi isa sa inyo maging parte sang ina nga team. To the parents of our children, salamat guid sa inyo nga pagpahulam sang inyo mga bata sa amon. We promise to not just to make them better football players but also better citizens of our country. To our players, mga bata, I hope that you take this program seriously while at the same time making sure you have fun. We have, right now, a golden opportunity in Philippine Football to reach heights that we have never reached before in this game that we love. We need your help in making sure that we do not waste this opportunity. Again, salamat guid and we hope you will have as much fun participating in this program as we had putting it together. Maayong hapon sa inyo nga tanan.