Mr. Frank Elizalde
International Olympic Committee
3rd Floor Building A Meralco Avenue,
Pasig City Tel # 6321254/631 5417
Dear Mr. Elizalde,
How are you? I hope you are fine and in good health!
Every time you speak ill of the Basketball Association of the Philippines (BAP), I am deeply saddened.
I have kept my silence for so long but when you said you had absolutely no sympathy for the BAP people, I had to come out openly to question your impartiality as the IOC representative to the Philippines!
Unbelievable as it may seem, the BAP has been existence for more than 70 years already.
If you are only out to get me, then don’t inflict pain on the other officials of the BAP, which has thousands of active members in each of the 17 regions.
That does not include hundreds of league-organizations affiliated with the BAP. It’s time that I open my mouth and tell you what is wrong with Philippine sports.
Your sympathy is not needed in the BAP vs. SBP leadership feud. It’s your lack of impartiality that is the issue.
Your one-sidedness against the BAP is very disappointing, coming as it is from the International Olympic Committee (IOC) representative to the Philippines. What has the BAP done to deserve this treatment from you?
Since 2001, when the BAP leadership dispute first broke out, you have always sided with the group that is opposed to the BAP or its choices.
Having stayed in your post for so long a time, you probably have grown old in opposing the BAP all the time. I cannot seem to understand what exactly is your agenda?
Are you truly a representative of the IOC Solidarity? If so, why are you playing politics?
You need not wonder why many National Sports Associations (NSAs) are in disarray today. It is because of your partiality to certain groups.
In the Manila Standard Today newspaper dated June 27, 2009, you stated that "you had absolutely no sympathy for BAP people."
Your confession can only mean that you are sympathizing with the Samahang Basketbol ng Pilipinas (SBP) group. And having admitted that your heart beats for the SBP group, it’s now time to announce to the world that the IOC Philippine representative is partial to one group.
For whatever considerations you have gotten to take this stand, may I remind you, the respectable Mr. Elizalde, that your position demands that you stay neutral until all the facts are in!
Study the Bangkok Agreement – assuming that you have not done so – and do it with utmost impartiality. Mediate – I repeat, mediate – between the opposing groups in the national basketball leadership dispute.
Your role as IOC representative is not to take sides. It is to settle disputes. If you play politics, you play with fire.
So far, you have foolishly played with fire so much so many NSAs are burning nowadays.
Take a look at what is happening with the Philippine Olympic Committee. It is inutile, no thanks to political patronage by its top officials.
The squid tactics to "search and destroy" the NSAs that are not on friendly terms with the POC president have wrought havoc to Philippine sports.
You, Mr. Elizalde, are also to be blamed for this mess. You and the POC have played not-so-beautiful music together for a long, long time so much so Philippine sports has gone from bad to worse .
On a personal note, the respectable Mr. Elizalde, seem to have nothing but hatred for me, having verbally attacked me so many times with no justification at all.
You recklessly spew venom every time you mention my name.
The lack of respect is very disturbing. Your attitude can be charming yet irritating sometimes to an Asian like me.
Notwithstanding that, I still have some respect left for you – probably because you remain the IOC representative until now.
Many NSA officials have told me that you easily get irritated or angry at sports personalities who are opposed to your policies or decisions.
To shoo them away, you get personal. Maybe you don’t like my guts. If this is true, then so be it. Every wrong in sports, particularly, basketball, you have always singled him out for blame. Worse, your first moves to strike down the BAP in 2005 have since had a domino effect as more NSAs are now encountering their own problems.
You keep on bullying the BAP to favor the SBP.
Yes, I understand rich people attract like magnets. But honorable men and women of principles are never influenced by material gains. I would like to believe that you belong to this group of honorable men and women.
Mr. Elizalde, here’s my unsolicited advice. Move decisively without fear or favor.
Look at the various NSAs. They are crying for leadership because corruption and political patronage have taken over their organizations.
You and I know that the POC must never interfere in the internal affairs of an NSA. But the POC pulled the trigger before and dipped its dirty hands into the BAP problems in 2005.
Now, look where the "fire" has spread.
Such "divide and rule" tactics are unacceptable in Philippine sports. Look at the NSAs that are now being subjected to illegal interference by the POC.
After basketball, there came the explosive disputes in swimming, archery, badminton, cycling, wushu, archery, gymnastics and billiards.
The POC interference is a blatant violation of the IOC charter.
This I presume you know very well. Yet, you have not done anything substantial and decisive to stop this malpractice.
As the IOC representative to the Philippines, you should never tolerate such dirty tactics.
Act and act swiftly, for tomorrow may be too late.
Don’t patronize or support deceptive and corrupt NSA officials for they are the real villains of Philippine sports.
Help clean Philippine sports and you can ride off onto the sunset with your heads high.
Graham C. Lim
Basketball Association of the Philippines (BAP)
cc: BAP Members/FIBA POC/PSC/IOC
National Sports Association (NSA);
Manila Standard Today/ POC-PSC Media Group