Can the abandoned Manny Pacquiao’s “P3.5B Sarangani Sports Center” pet project KOs senator’s presidential dream?

Senator Manny Pacquiao has boasted previously that if he becomes President, he will end squatter problem in the country by building subdivisions and condos for the poor, especially in Metro Manila.

However, a netizen named Butch Ruiz Baliao is already putting a huge question mark on the senator’s ability to deliver one of his promises if he becomes president.

In a Facebook post that is starting to gain national attention, Baliao shared a video of what he called “PACQUIAO’s SCANDALOUS P3.5B SPORTS CENTER” to cast doubt on Senator Manny Pacquiao’s ability to solve the squatter problem in the country.

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Baliao began by giving the public a backdrop of Sarangani province when compared to the other provinces of the Philippines. Despite its pitiful situation, this did not stop its leaders from prioritizing a project which he said will not contribute in uplifting the lives of its people – the P3.5B Sarangani Sports Center.

Sarangani Province, being one of the ten poorest provinces in the country, did not deter its leaders from prioritizing a project which will not help in uplifting it- THE P3.5B SARANGANI SPORTS CENTER. Instead, it will only uplift the egos of those who rule. And enrich favored contractors.”

Baliao argued that instead of pouring money on agriculture or building job-generating factories, the P3.5B Sports Center is a bad idea because it is a duplication of the New Clark City Sport Academy plus it is located farther south in the archipelago. By the way, according to the law creating the said sports center, the provincial government of Sarangani and the municipal government of Alabel will fund the construction, establishment and operation of the Sarangani Sports Training Center. Funds will be granted by the Philippine Sports Commission (PSC). In addition, grants and endowments may be obtained from local or foreign sources and intended for sports development. [PNA]

“BECAUSE INSTEAD of investing in the development of agriculture and building factories, building the P3.5B Sports Center to house our national athletes was a very bad idea, that aside from being located in the southernmost end of the country and therefore not strategically located (for the various national athletes to go to train), it is a duplication of the newly-built sports facilities in Clark which the national government built at a cost of P3B-P6B in hosting the last SEA GAMES.”

Baliao updated the public of the status of the construction of the P3.5B Sports Center and when it was started.

“CONSTRUCTION OF THE VARIOUS facilities in the said Sports Center started in 2018 but up to now remain uncompleted and abandoned. Look at the tall cogon grasses- they are about to cover the abandoned buildings‼️

Finally, Baliao revealed who was the author of the bill establishing the Sarangani Sports Training Center to wrap up the post.

“PACQUIAO authored Republic Act 11224 otherwise known as an Act establishing the Sarangani Sports Training Center in the Municipality of Alabel, Sarangani Province. This is clearly a useless Bill and a waste of public funds‼️

“AND THE GUY WANTS TO BE PRESIDENT⁉️ a snickering Baliao asked.

A quick Google search tells us that the Sarangani Sports Center needs more work to start accepting athletes under its wings. [Link here] Please do watch the video taken by the netizen for comparison by clicking the link here.

But I agree with Baliao’s point that the P3.5B funds could have been put to better use like pouring the money in the development of agriculture in the province to uplift the lives of the people of Sarangani province rather than in projects which will not make the lives of the Sarangani people better.

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Source: Butch Ruiz Baliao

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