New Clark City to host PSI Swimming National Selection Bubble

Robie de Guzman   •   October 21, 2021   •   1155

The New Clark City in Capas, Tarlac is reopening its doors to Filipino athletes with the hosting of the 2021 Philippine Swimming Inc. (PSI) National Selection Bubble from October 22 to 24, the Bases Conversion and Development Authority announced.

In a statement on Wednesday, the BCDA said that a total of 71 local swimmers will join the national tryouts at the world-class Aquatics Center in a bid to qualify for the 15th Fédération Internationale de Natation (FINA) World Swimming Championships 2021 in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates this December.

The swimmers are also eyeing to compete in the 19th FINA World Championships 2022 expected to be held in Fukuoka, Japan in May next year, it added.

The PSI event was originally scheduled for August 28 to 30 as approved by the Inter-Agency Task Force for the Management of Emerging Infectious Diseases. However, it was postponed due to the surge in COVID-19 cases, which warranted the reimposition of stricter mobility restrictions.

“As a home for Filipino athletes, New Clark City is proud to host this swimming event and help the country’s hopefuls go for gold in international competitions,” said BCDA Officer-in-Charge Atty. Aristotle Batuhan.

“Through the PSI bubble, our countrymen can see that the country is on the path towards healing, with our athletes serving as icons of determination and strength despite the odds,” he added.

In the same statement, PSI President Lani Velasco said that the event seeks to inspire athletes to continue their efforts despite the pandemic.

“We hope that the event can show to the youth that we can rise again and recover from this pandemic. We hope to encourage current swimmers to train even more to reach their dreams,” she said.

“We also hope to encourage more individuals to take on the sport. After more than a year of not holding events, the 2021 PSI Swimming National Selection Bubble is only the beginning of more events to come,” she added.

The competition will be held at the New Clark City Aquatics Center.

Athletes, coaches and staff joining the event will be billeted at the Hotel Stotsenberg in the Clark Freeport Zone in Pampanga.

Batuhan assured that strict health and safety protocols will be implemented during the tryouts.

He reminded that movement of bubble participants will be limited to the hotel and the training venue.

Vaccinated bubble participants are required to take an RT-PCR test, followed by home isolation. They will take more tests (RT-PCR and antigen) before isolating at Hotel Stotsenberg until the result is known.

In case a participant tests positive inside the bubble, Batuhan assured that Hotel Stotsenberg has rooms allocated for isolation. Partner hospitals will also be on standby to provide medical care.

The 2021 PSI Swimming National Selection Meet is hosted by BCDA, its subsidiary Clark Development Corp. (CDC), and PSI, the country’s governing body for aquatic sports.

New Clark City Athletics Stadium nominated anew in World Architecture Festival

Robie de Guzman   •   October 21, 2021

The Athletics Stadium in New Clark City in Capas, Tarlac has been nominated once again in the World Architecture Festival (WAF), the Bases Conversion and Development Authority (BCDA) said.

In a statement, the BCDA said New Clark City’s internationally accredited sports stadium is vying for the Engineering Prize of the prestigious festival.

The BCDA said that the WAF already included the stadium in the shortlist of Sport Completed Buildings last July.

More than 270 entries were nominated across all Completed Buildings subcategories by the WAF, the largest international architecture event in the world, it added.

The New Clark City Athletics Stadium is the first major sports hub constructed by the government since the completion of the Rizal Memorial Sports Complex in 1934, according to the BCDA.

With a 20,000-seating capacity, a nine-lane 400-meter track and field, and another four-lane warm-up track, the stadium served as a venue for the 30th Southeast Asian Games in 2019.

It was previously nominated as one of the top 10 best stadiums in the world at the annual Stadium of the Year Awards.

The WAF is set to take place at the FIL Exhibition Center in Lisbon, Portugal from December 1 to 3.

Dizon quit as BCDA chief to focus on tasks in gov’t’s COVID-19 response – Palace

Robie de Guzman   •   October 19, 2021

MANILA, Philippines – Malacañang on Tuesday confirmed that Secretary Vince Dizon has stepped down from his post as president of the Bases and Conversion Development Authority (BCDA).

“We wish to inform that BCDA president and CEO and presidential adviser on flagship programs and projects, Mr. Vivencio Dizon tendered his resignation effective October 15, 2021,” Presidential Spokesperson Harry Roque said in a press briefing.

Roque said Dizon resigned as BCDA chief to focus on his tasks relating to the government’s COVID-19 response.

“Secretary Vince has asked the president to unload him of his task so he can focus full time on the national government’s COVID response efforts and vaccination rollout,” he said.

He, however, said that Dizon will stay as the government’s testing czar and deputy chief implementer of the National Task Force against COVID-19.

“Mananatili po sa gobyerno bilang presidential adviser for Covid-19 response si Secretary Vince Dizon. Patuloy rin niya gagampanan ang kanyang tungkulin bilang deputy chief implementer ng National Task Force Against Covid-19 at vaccine czar,” Roque said.

News on Dizon’s resignation was first announced by BCDA vice president Aileen Zosa during a Senate deliberation on the agency’s proposed 2022 budget.

BCDA director Aristotle Batuhan has been appointed officer-in-charge of the agency, Roque said.

Vince Dizon resigns as BCDA president; still testing czar

Aileen Cerrudo   •   October 19, 2021

Secretary Vince Dizon has resigned as president of the Bases Conversion and Development Authority (BCDA).

Dizon’s irrevocable resignation, which was already effective on October 15, was confirmed by BCDA executive vice president Aileen Zosa during a budget hearing for the agency at the Senate on Monday (October 18).

“The resignation letter of President Vince Dizon to the President has an effectivity date of resignation on October 15,” she said.

Zosa, however, clarified that Dizon will remain as a Cabinet member, testing czar, and deputy chief implementer of the National Task Force against COVID-19.

“I think it was an irrevocable resignation but he will stay in the Cabinet for the anti-COVID efforts of the government,” she added. AAC


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