House of Representatives
Quezon City, Metro Manila
04 April 2008
MR. MANUEL V. PANGILINAN
BAP-SBP, PLDT Building
Dear Mr. Pangilinan,
This is a reply to your letter of 28 March 2008 .
Let me state, at the outset, that your letter commented only on three (3) of the seven (7) items which I mentioned, inter-alia, as the breaches that were committed on the Bangkok Agreement which you signed on 04 February 2007.
If you will act only in good faith and give value to your signature to the Bangkok Agreement, the clear intention of said Agreement is to provide the governing framework for the BAP and the SBP to work together, within the transitory period of one (1) year to unify the principal stakeholders in Philippine Basketball as represented by BAP and SBP.
This Bangkok Agreement was reached under the auspices of FIBA and FIBA (Asia) such that Mr. Patrick Baumann, Secretary-General of FIBA and Sheik Saud Bin Ali Al-Thani, President of FIBA (Asia) and Dato Yeoh Choo Hock, Secretary-General of FIBA (Asia) were also signatories to the Bangkok Agreement.
There is absolutely no intention to abolish BAP but to organize a “functional merger” of BAP-SBP. Indeed the Bangkok Agreement expressly stated that the corporate name of SBP shall be amended to read “BAP-SBP”, with BAP, the 71-years old organization being given precedence and prominence in the corporate name.
Contrary to the letter and spirit of the Bangkok Agreement, the allegations of your media propagandist which posed the question in a press write-up on 03 April 2008 : “Will the BAP forced to extinction by POC (?) be allowed to resurrect? Will the BAP-SBP be finally rid of the BAP albatross and progress as just SBP?”, if not denied by you and if your actions do not belie such intriguing innuendos, then you could rightfully be charged that you affixed your signature to the Bangkok Agreement not with clean hand.
But let me focus on the specific issues you raised in your letter of 28 March 2008 including the press reactions of your “boys” to my letter of 27 March 2008 which you released to media before we could thresh out the issues involved as internal matters to BAP and SBP:
1. It is absolute falsehood for you to claim that my assumption as Chairman of BAP-SBP
can be made effective only upon a vacancy being created in the BAP-SBP Board.
I say that you are not being truthful because:
a. The Bangkok Agreement was very express and categorical in stipulating that the BAP shall
have the right to nominate the Chairman of the BAP-SBP Board of Trustees;
b. At the Unity Congress held at the Dusit Hotel, Makati City on 05 February 2007, I was one of
the twelve (12) BAP nominees allocated to BAP under the sharing arrangement agreed upon.
A copy of the list of BAP nominees is hereto attached as Annex “A”, as duly submitted to
and received by Atty. Marievic R. Añonuevo, the Acting Corporate Secretary of the BAP-SBP
Unity Congress and the interim Board of Trustees of BAP-SBP;
c. The Minutes of the Meeting of the BAP-SBP organizational meeting in implementation of
the Bangkok Agreement reflected the following:
“Upon nominations, duly made and seconded, the following
officers of the Corporation for the year 2007-2008 and until
their successors shall have been duly elected and qualified:
Chairman - Luis R. Villafuerte
Vice-Chairman - Victorico P. Vargas
President - Manuel V. Pangilinan
Secretary - Marievic R. Añonuevo
Treasurer - Christian D. Tan
Legal Counsel - Bonifacio Alentajan
The aforequoted minutes of the Meeting was duly ATTESTED with the signatures of
Manuel V. Pangilinan and Marievic R. Añonuevo.
d. It should be emphasized that the organizational meeting to implement the Bangkok Agreement
was to constitute the Board of Trustees of the BAP-SBP, and not of SBP merely. Hence, the
new composition of the Board of Trustees and the new set of officers were the proper subjects
of the nominations and elections. Any attempt to subvert and undermine the letter and intent
of the Bangkok Agreement during and after the meeting should be construed as transgressions
and are null and void.
e. In the light of the foregoing, it is very clear that I, as duly nominated and elected Chairman
of BAP-SBP did not and does not need a vacancy to be created before I could assume
the Chairmanship of the BAP-SBP Board of Trustees.
f. But even granting arguendo that a vacancy need to be created in the Board of Trustees,
before the Chairman of the Board could be filled-up, there were already several
resignations that have already been tendered which you ignored.
2. It is grossly misleading, at the very least and an absolute falsehood, at worst, for you to
claim that the new nominees of BAP to the BAP-SBP Board cannot be recognized
unless an incumbent “BAP- nominee trustee” agrees to resign or to step down.
From the very outset, you and your “boys” maneuvered not to recognize the twelve (12)
nominees of the BAP-SBP Board. What you did was to retain the original Board of Trustees
of the SBP, which Board members were already superseded by the BAP-SBP Board, as
envisioned in the Bangkok Agreement.
Should you invoke “technicalities” to nullify the Bangkok Agreement then again it could be
said that you acted in bad faith when you signed the Bangkok Agreement.
Even for the sake of argument without conceding it that vacancies must be created before they
are replaced, it is on record that from the original Board Members prior to the BAP-SBP Bangkok
Agreement there were Board members that already resigned, namely Mr. Joey Lina and
Lito Alvarez. Mr. Fritz Gaston resigned as BAP Director, but he was still retained as BAP-SBP
Board Member because he professed to shift his loyalty to SBP.
Messrs. Michel Lhuillier and Raul Alcoseba were and still are no longer affiliated with BAP and
were not nominated by BAP under the BAP-SBP Agreement, but both of them are still in the
BAP-SBP Board of Trustees.
These are some of the irregularities that you perpetuate, such that instead of fostering
cooperation between BAP and SBP, there is disunity, distrust and animosity.
3. With respect to the third point that pertain to the alleged donation of funds from TAO
Corporation and NOKIA you falsely alluded to me that I insinuated that said funds, to quote you
verbatim “are diverted for a purpose other than National Basketball Youth Development, to
the detriment of the BAP-SBP”. If you will only re-read my letter there was absolutely no
suggestion of “diversion of funds” for a purpose other than “National Basketball Youth
Development”. I never said such words and phrases.
What I implied was that BAP-SBP, as a corporate entity, was not made the direct beneficiary of the
funds, as said funds were not deposited to the BAP-SBP bank account where the BAP-SBP
Treasurer in the person of Mr. Christian Tan could be the signatory of checks whenever
disbursements of the donated funds would be made for purposes required by BAP-SBP
programs or projects.
The question that remains is that if no corporation was created as a conduit for the funds, are the
funds being directly disbursed to activities or events without passing through the BAP-SBP bank
accounts or is there a new BAP-SBP bank account that excludes Mr. Christian Tan as signatory
or that Mr. Tan being the Treasurer nominated by BAP in the BAP-SBP arrangements is being
by-passed by other signatories.
If, as you claimed in your letter to me that “ TAO Corporation and Nokia have required that
all funds disbursed are to have dual signatories – one from their side and the other from BAP-
SBP” then it is clear as sunlight that the funds, purportedly already donated, are not yet in a
BAP-SBP bank account, but in a bank account where the signatories consist of an alleged BAP-SBP
signatory that excludes its Treasurer, Mr. Christian Tan and an outsider from BAP-SBP
represented by the donors.
If, as claimed that donated funds to BAP-SBP are handled with “full transparency”, then you, Mr.
Pangilinan, better disclose fully all the details of the arrangements made with the donor entities.
We, in BAP do not care where, for what, and how much are to be expended “for the sports
basketball, but let us follow procedures that will provide full disclosure if needed the funds
are for BAP-SBP projects as announced or only SBP projects. If it is only for SBP projects or for
Manny Pangilinan proposals, let it be and we, in BAP, if properly clarified, will put the issue at rest.
The point at issue here is that: is there really a BAP-SBP rapprochement or there is none, in
spite of the pretensions brought about by the Bangkok Agreement. Is there really a plot to
render BAP extinct?
As I said in my letter to you of 27 March 2008 , I agreed to participate in the BAP-SBP arrangement
because I thought that you and I could be honest brokers and objective mediators of the
differences between BAP and SBP. I have no personal agenda to pursue other than to
contribute to the efforts to unify BAP-SBP. I am even willing to bow out after a sincere and
meaningful unity is achieved.
I believe that one (1) year transition period provided by the Bangkok Agreement would be
adequate to arrive at workable solutions where harmony and cooperation will prevail in an
atmosphere where those from BAP and from SBP will look at themselves as one.
But based on your actuations and behaviour, it is very obvious that unity is but an illusion,
unless you reconsider your maneuvers against the BAP. If you allow yourself to be dominated
by your “boys” or that in fact what your “boys” are doing are upon your instructions, then the
letter and spirit of the Bangkok Agreement will be brought to naught.
You will hear from me again on other related matters but in the meantime, I shall await your reply.
Very truly yours,
LUIS R. VILLAFUERTE
BAP and BAP-SBP
Congressman Prospero A. Pichay, Jr., BAP President
BAP Executive Board
Mr. Bob Elphinston / Mr. Patrick Baumann, FIBA
Shk. Saud Bin Ali Al-Thani, FIBA Asia
Dato Yeoh Choo Hock, FIBA Asia
Mr. William Ramirez, Philippine Sports Commission
Mr. Peping Cojuangco, Philippine Olympic Committee
Mr. Robert Aventajado, Philippine Olympic Committee
Mr. Eric Buhain, Games and Amusement Board