As a chief proponent of the Reserve Officer Training Corps Games slated for next year, Senator Tolentino aims to make the competition a venue for the selection of national training pool athletes.
“The ROTC Games will not be a glorified intramural, it will be home for high-level competitions that will develop disciplined, elite athletes,” Tolentino said during Friday’s launch of his brainchild.
“The launching of the 2023 Philippine ROTC Games signals the beginning of our quest for young Filipino athletes, who will not only excel in sports but, more importantly, showcase to the world that the Filipino has a heart of a champion,” added Tolentino, who has a rank of Brigadier General in the army reserve command.
Sports included in the program are athletics, obstacle sports, swimming, boxing, arnis, weightlifting, e-sports, basketball, volleyball, target shooting, gymnastics and kickboxing, under Samahang Kickboxing ng Pilipinas, which is headed by the Tolentino as president.
SKP will make the ROTC Games, a major part of its national grassroots program.
It will be the first time in the country’s sports history that ROTC cadets will be induced to compete in high-level sports, carrying not just their schools, but also their military units—the Army, Navy, and Air Force.
The ROTC Games will be a year-round program involving clinics in seminars in various provincial commands, regional tournaments and the national finals.
In collaboration with the Department of National Defense, Armed Forces of the Philippines, Commission on Higher Education, the Philippine Sports Commission and the Philippine Olympic Committee, the 2023 Philippine ROTC Games was officially launched at the Lapu-Lapu Grandstand inside Camp Aguinaldo in Quezon City.
Department of Defense Undersecretary and officer-in-charge Jose Faustino Jr. led the signing of the Memorandum of Agreement, together with AFP chief Lt. Gen. Bartolome Vicente Bacarro, CHED chairman Dr. Prospero de Vera III and PSC chairman Jose Emmanuel “Noli” Eala.
“It (the Philippine ROTC Games) not only provides a viable format in training our young people towards their basic patriotic duty to the country, but is also an avenue for a new, diverse, and massed platform for our country’s grassroots development program,” said Eala.
“This multi-discipline event will enable us to identify new, dedicated, and finely skilled student-athletes who will serve as sports heroes of the country in the future.”