Fresh SBP Mandate For MVP

The Samahang Basketbol ng Pilipinas (SBP) yesterday elected by acclamation to a fresh four-year term the current SBP Board of Trustees led by president Manny V. Pangilinan (MVP) who immediately called for a more aggressive grassroots development program.

SBP chairman Oscar Moreno, the Misamis Oriental governor, moved for the acclamation of the nominees and a seconded motion drew a loud applause from those present, including FIBA technical officer Ben Turner.

The board is to go through a formal election of officers later in the day although no major changes are expected, with Moreno getting retained as chairman; Maynilad Water president Victorico P. Vargas, vice chairman; Atty. Marievic Anonuevo, board secretary; and Dr. Jay Adalem, treasurer.

"We may need another strategic planning session to plan more grassroots projects," said Pangilinan, also the chairman of the Amateur Boxing Association of the Philippines.

Asked to assess SBP's performance in the last four years, the telecommunications tycoon said: "We could have done more for grassroots, but in the whole, it was a good four years; we could do better though."

Moreno, for his part, sees a more "focused" group working for the growth of SBP and the country's "return to basketball supremacy" in Asia.

"There were some conflicts the first four years," said Moreno. "Hopefully, there will be more unity and cooperation now."

SBP executive director Sonny Barrios, who outlined the association's achievements before turning the floor over to deputy executive director Bernie Atienza's powerpoint presentation, said the proliferation of local tournaments in the country will have to be monitored.

"Dapat walang over-saturation," said Barrios, former commissioner in the Philippine Basketball Association. "We'll be looking at that closely even as we work for a more extensive grassroots program. We're also working to improve the lots of coaches and referees on the provincial level."

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