PH Lawmaker seeks to ban foreign players in collegiate leagues

  • A party-list lawmaker, who actively advocates for Philippine sports, is proposing to ban foreign athletes in collegiate and university leagues.
  • 1-Pacman Partylist Rep. Michael Romero said this is to develop “homegrown Filipino players” in the country.
  • He added that “one athlete slot given to a foreign player is one slot denied to a Pinoy player.”

MANILA, Philippines—A party-list lawmaker on Monday sought to ban foreign imports as players in collegiate leagues, to promote and develop “homegrown Filipino players” in the country.

1-Pacman Party-list Rep. Michael “Mikee” Romero filed House Resolution (HR) 388 urging a House committee to stop all collegiate and university leagues from recruiting, acquiring and using non-Filipino citizens and foreign imports as players.

 “The proliferation of this non-Filipino citizens and foreign import players are stopping the growth and development of homegrown Filipino talents,” Romero said.

Photo from PNA

The lawmaker said that over the last ten years, the rules of collegiate and university leagues have been “flip-flopping” on the issue, particularly in the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCCA) and the University Athletic Association of the Philippines (UAAP).

“One athlete slot given to a foreign player is one slot denied to a Pinoy player. It’s as simple as that,” he said.

Romero also urged the Department of Education and Commission on Higher Education to reconsider the athletics programs of the schools under the regulatory domain.

He added that the last-place finish of Gilas Pilipinas also shows “the lack of homegrown talent” in the field of basketball.

Romero, the owner of the PBA ballclub Northport, noted that Philippine colleges and universities practicing the recruitment of non-Filipino and foreign athletes are “so engrossed” in winning a championship for their schools that they would have to rely on the competitive advantage of African and American countries.

“There is no sense of affinity anymore between the players and the various spectators and fans, as the audience are merely watching a foreign import dominate collegiate and university teams. Unfortunately, this does not reflect so well on us as a people,” Romero said in his resolution.

“It is imperative that the legislature enact the necessary measures that would stop and prohibit all collegiate and university leagues from recruiting, acquiring and using non-Filipino citizens and foreign imports as players,” he added.

Source: House of Representatives


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