The Philippine Sports Commission (PSC) has issued cash incentives to the nation’s successful Olympians, with the windfall funded by the nation’s gaming regulator PAGCOR.
The incentives, taken from PAGCOR’s mandated National Sports Development Fund, included Php15 million (US$300,000) to weightlifter Hidilyn Diaz for winning the Philippines’ first Olympic gold medal, Php5 million (US$100,000) each to silver-medalist boxers Nesthy Petecio and Carlo Paalam, and Php2 million (US$40,000) to boxer Eumir Marcial for his bronze medal finish.
Also rewarded were Diaz’s trainer, Antonio Agustin, Jr to the tune of Php5 million (US$100,000), while swimmer Luke Michael Gebbie and weightlifter Elreen Ann Ando received Php250,000 (US$5,000) each for setting new national records.
“PAGCOR’s contributions funded the training and preparation of the Philippine team for the Olympics,” said PSC Chairman William Ramirez in a letter sent to the regulator.
“With their help, our national athletes are able to show the world just how talented the Filipino athletes are.”
The release of cash incentives to the Olympians is mandated by the National Athletes and Coaches Benefits and Incentives Act, which provides financial rewards to athletes and their coaches who win in major international sports competitions.
“We will never tire in our effort to pump-in the necessary support to athletic development as we’re certain that more Filipino sports heroes will emerge in the future with ample financial backing,” said PAGCOR chair Andrea Domingo.
PAGCOR revealed this week that it has remitted a total of Php7.37 billion (US$147 million) to the PSC since 2016.