Who will pay to maintain the P9.5 billion Clark sports stadium and other sports faciltiies after the Southeast Asian Games (SEAG)?
Senator Frankling Drilon is worried that Speaker Alan Cayetano, chairman of the Philippine SEA Games Organizing Committee (PHISGOC), and his former errand boy, Bases Conversion Development Authority Chair Vince Dizon, have built white elephant sports projects in the New Clark City in Tarlac and skateboarding and cycling facilities in Tagaytay.
“I have seen a few sites of athletic meets and events all over the world. I have seen the Olympic Stadium in a number of countries, which today are just monuments of non-use. And these are assets which are, in effect, just in our books without any income being earned,” said Drilon during the 2020 budget hearings where the approval of BCDA’s P15.496-billion proposed budget for 2020 had been recalled.
Drilon felt that Cayetano and Dizon did not put too much brain power in planning whether such a one-month, minor sports event deserved massive funds that could have been spent for projects with more social and lasting impact.
“It would appear to me that we just built this, the money was available, bahala na si Batman pagkatapos (we leave everything to chance),” said Drilon.
Dizon claimed that the New Clark City stadium would only need a P200 million a year maintenance budget which he planned to be financed through private sector deals.
But Drilon was adamant that these facilities were doomed to be a bust just like flagship projects under Dizon.
“I think this has not been thought out, it can be a burden to the budget with the maintenance cost. I believe we cannot generate enough funds to maintain this and because of the lack of funds, these facilities with deteriorate overtime,” Drilon said.
Drilon had previously dissed the 75 flagship projects under Dizon as a “dismal failure” with only two projects completed in three years and 24 projects weeded out because they were white elephants or not yet deemed feasible.