By Marc Anthony Reyes
Philippine Daily Inquirer
First Posted 04:29:00 05/29/2009
Filed Under: Sports Organisations
MANILA, Philippines - The fight over who takes the reins in equestrian rages on.
Empowered by the recognition of the sport’s international federation, Equestrian Association of the Philippines president and party-list Rep. Carisa Coscolluela yesterday lashed out at the Philippine Olympic Committee for “depriving” her of the “right” to represent the sport in Wednesday’s POC general assembly meeting.
Coscolluela, who was voted EAP head in a recent special election not recognized by the POC, e-mailed the Inquirer a copy of the letter from Federacion Equestre Internationale chief executive and secretary general Alexander McLin, who expressed willingness to recognize her as the duly elected president of the EAP.
“Following thorough analysis of all document received pertaining to the elections ... we are ready to recognize the validity of the results of your special meeting,” McLin said in his letter from the FEI headquarters in Lausanne, Switzerland.
The rival camp of equestrian and POC president Jose “Peping” Cojuangco Jr., however, dismissed the letter, saying it did not constitute outright recognition of Coscolluela and her group, which held their elections last April 23.
Cojuangco stressed that the letter specifically said that the FEI has the right to reverse its decision if
presented evidence against the actions of Coscolluela’s groups, thus:
“We reserve the right to revise our decision should any evidence ... be presented to us by any of the involved parties before 13 May 2009.”
Cojuangco said that the FEI has already replied to him after he submitted evidence to prove “that the election of the Coscolluela group was illegal.” He did not elaborate.
During Wednesday’s POC meeting at the Wack Wack Golf and Country Club in Mandaluyong, Coscolluela claimed that she was not allowed to speak before the assembly even though the POC chair, Rep. Monico Puentevella, ruled that she be allowed to take the floor.
“Mr. Cojuangco and Mr. Joseph objected to this ruling and the chair, knowing full well that rulings, unlike motions, cannot be objected to, entertained their objection,” said Coscolluela.
“It is unfair, not only to me but to all NSAs, that the POC arbitrarily and inconsistently applies rules depending on personality—favorably to those allied with it.”