MANILA, Philippines – Filipino athletes who brought home four-medal haul from the recent 2020 Tokyo Olympics have received incentives from the government on Monday.
In a ceremony at Malacañan Palace , President Rodrigo Duterte gave the athletes their incentives as he congratulated them again for bringing pride to the country and uplifting the spirit of Filipinos amid the coronavirus pandemic.
“Your hard work, dedication and sportsmanship, even amidst the challenges in your training and competitions prior to the Olympics, are truly inspiring,” Duterte told the Olympians during the event.
“I am confident that you will get better and stronger in securing more victories in the future. Your success will continue to motivate many aspiring athletes and our Filipino youth to channel their energies into sports and other productive activities, keeping them away from the harmful vices,” he added.
Weightlifter Hidilyn Diaz, the country’s first-ever gold medalist, received P15 million from the Philippine Sports Commission (PSC) and Philippine Amusement and Gaming Corp., a housing unit from the National Housing Authority (NHA) and P3 million from the Office of the President.
She was also conferred the Presidential Medal of Merit.
Boxers Nesthy Petecio and Carlo Paalam, who both clinched silver medals, each received P5 million from the PSC, housing unit from NHA and P2 million from the Office of the President.
Bronze medalist Eumir Marcial got P2 million from the PSC, a housing unit from NHA and P1 million from the Office of the President
The Filipino boxers were also conferred the Order of Lapu-Lapu, Rank of Kamagi. The Order of Lapu-Lapu is given to persons in government or private sector who have rendered extraordinary service or have made exceptional contributions to the success of the President’s campaign or advocacy.
Other athletes who participated in the Tokyo Olympics will receive P200,000 and Presidential citations.
Boxer Mansueto “Onyok” Velasco, who copped the Philippines’ first silver medal in the 1996 Atlanta Olympics, also received P500,000 from the Office of the President during the event.
Velasco was given incentive after he revealed that he has yet to get the P2.5 million pledged by some lawmakers when he brought home the medal in 1996.
Duterte assured that the government remains committed to providing full support to Filipino athletes, as he urged the PSC, Philippine Olympic Committee and other sports bodies to continue providing much-needed assistance to keep the country’s athletes at the elite level and attain greatness.
“The strength and excellence of our athletes in the international sports arena demonstrate the Filipino spirit of resilience and determination to succeed,” he said.
“Our Tokyo 2020 medalists and Olympians truly embody our greatness as a people and as a nation,” he added.