Philippines in Danger of Losing Right to Host 2019 SEA Games?

The SEA Games Federation Council is reportedly keeping a close eye on the preps.

(SPOT.ph) The Philippines may end up losing its right to host the 2019 Southeast Asian Games, according to a report by Fox Sports AsiaAccording to The Daily Tribune, the Southeast Asian Games Federation Council is monitoring the situation because although the Games are eight months away, work related to hosting the event has progressed slowly due to a lack of funds and in-government bickering.

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The Philippines committed to hosting the 2019 Southeast Asian Games, also known as the SEA Games, in 2017—Brunei Darussalam had decided to pull out in 2015 because of lack of government backing from the Ministry of Youth, Culture, and Sports. The prospect of hosting the 2019 SEA Games was initially met with some excitement, with the New Clark City Sports Complex being constructed, and proclamations that it was going to be the best and biggest ever edition of the SEA Games, highlighting 56 sports and 529 events. But it wasn’t without its issues, starting with the release of the much-maligned controversial logo and the whittled-down budget allocated by the Senate for the event. In November 2018, SPIN.ph reported on the progress of the sport complex's construction. In the same report, Bases and Conversion Development Authority president Vince Dizon mentioned that the facility can host test events as early as August. 

Indonesia and Thailand are reportedly ready to step up in case the Philippines loses its hosting rights, with Thailand stating that they could host the SEA Games immediately.

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The New Clark City Sports Complex as of November 2018.
PHOTO BY Reuben Terrado

The developer of the New Clark City Sports Complex has said that they could finish construction in August, three months before the SEA Games. Philippine Olympic Committee executive council member Prospero Pichay, for his part, said that mounting the SEA Games is still possible if the budget is released within March 2019.

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