MANILA – The Philippine Southeast Asian Games Organizing Committee (PHISGOC) has donated to the Philippine Olympic Committee (POC) the PHP3.3 million unspent during the country’s hosting in 2019.

The funds, which were raised from private sponsors during the tournament held November 30 to December 10, are now in the POC trust fund for athletes.

“We’re very thankful to the PHISGOC for donating the saved money that we can use for our athletes in the future,” Abraham Tolentino, POC president, said in a statement on Friday.

Ramon Suzara, PHISGOC chief operating officer and head of the Philippine National Volleyball Federation, has confirmed the turnover of the funds to the POC.

He said the Philippine Sports Commission was informed of the transfer.

The PHISGOC operated with a PHP6-billion fund for the hosting of the 2019 Southeast Asian Games, where the country emerged overall champion.

The funds came from the government and private sector.

Based on the PHISGOC financial report, the unspent funds were supposed to be payments for suppliers of various national sports associations.

“But for one reason or another, these suppliers could no longer be found, nor did they send a representative to collect payments,” said Tolentino. “But in case someone surfaces to collect, they can do so with the PSC.”

Tolentino, also the Integrated Cycling Federation of the Philippines president and mayor of Tagaytay City in Cavite, said cash incentives and bonuses for athletes are sourced from the trust fund. (PNA)