MANILA, Oct 7 (Mabuhay) — President Rodrigo Duterte on Wednesday heaped praises on Bases Conversion and Development Authority (BCDA) president and chief executive officer Vivencio Dizon over the ongoing construction of the National Academy of Sports (NAS) at the New Clark City in Tarlac.

In his pre-recorded Talk to the People, Duterte said Dizon would be remembered for his significant contributions to the establishment of NAS that is designed as an educational facility for student-athletes.

“Thank you, Vince Dizon. You know, about 20 years from now when you go to Clark City, then you look at the buildings that you have helped built, I’m sure that you will have that fire of love of country and patriotism and that you helped build what it is now,” Duterte told Dizon.

Duterte made the remarks, after Dizon assured the President that NAS will be inaugurated before the end of his term in June 2022.

Dizon said the creation of NAS will be one of Duterte’s legacies.

“Nagsisimula na po ang construction nito at pinapangako po namin na bago matapos ang iyong termino (Its construction is already underway and we promise, before your term ends), you will inaugurate this beautiful, world-class sports academy,” he said. “Talagang iyan po ang magiging legacy ng Duterte administration para sa ating mga atleta, present and future (That will be the legacy of the Duterte administration for the present and future athletes).”

Duterte, reacting to Dizon’s statement, expressed his intent to give the BCDA chief a “gold medal” for his agency’s accomplishments.

“The Filipino will remember you, which will remind me, bigyan kita ng gold medal (I will give you a gold medal),” he said.

Dizon, however, said the success in building NAS could already be considered a “gold medal.”

“First time in history po, mabibigyan ng parangal ang ating mga atleta dahil magkakaroon na po sila ng kanilang sariling high school (It’s first time in history that we can honor our athletes because they will have their own campus),” he said.

On June 9, 2020, Duterte inked Republic Act 11470 that establishes NAS at the New Clark City in Tarlac.

Under the law, the NAS would offer a secondary education program integrated with a specific curriculum on sports to help young Filipino athletes develop further their sporting skills.

RA 11470 also grants full scholarships to qualified student-athletes.

The main campus of the NAS will be equipped with the necessary sports facilities, housing, and other amenities that are based on current international standards, according to the law.

School buildings with enough classrooms will also be constructed at the complex. (MNS)

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