2015 Palarong ARMMAA kicks off in Maguindanao
Parang, Maguindanao (26 February 2015) – The 2015 Palarong Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao Athletics Association (ARMMAA) officially kicked off today, 26 February, at Parang Central Elementary School here with approximately 5,000 officials and student-athletes from across the region.
The opening ceremony was attended by thousands of spectators and government officials that included ARMM Gov. Mujiv Hataman, Education Secretary Jamar Kulayan, Maguindanao Gov. Esmael Mangudadatu, Rep. Bai Sandra Sema of the Second District of Maguindanao and Parang Mayor Ibrahim Ibay.
The region-wide athletic meet will last until 03 March with athletes both from elementary and secondary competing in sports like basketball, volleyball, football, athletics, boxing, wushu, arnis, wrestling, taekwondo, and archery. The athletic delegations represent the nine schools divisions in the region, namely: Tawi-Tawi, Sulu, Basilan, Lamitan City, Marawi City, Lanao del Sur I and II and Maguindanao I and II.
Officials emphasized the significance of the annual regional games not just to sports, but also to the state of peace and security in the region.
“Napapanahon ang paglunsad ng Palarong ARMMAA dahil sa kabila ng malungkot na mga trahedya ngayon ay maipapakita natin na tayo ay nagkakaisa para sa kapayapaan. Ang mga atleta natin ang siyang magdadala ng sulo ng kapayaapan sa mas mabilis, mas mataas at mas malakas na antas na larangan ng sports,” ARMM Governor Mujiv Hataman said.
It is the second time for the games to be held in the town of Parang, Maguindanao. Some of the students from Maguindanao participating in the games have to hurdle setback caused by the recent conflicts in the province, which disrupted both their regular class and practice.
ARMMAA has served as initial training ground for some of the region’s promising and professional athletes particularly in swimming and volleyball.
For his part, Secretary Kulayan said he is hoping for the region to do a better performance in the upcoming Palarong Pambansa.
“Gusto nating mas tumaas ang ating ranggo at makakuha tayo ng mas maraming gold medals” he said.
In 2014, Lamitan City Division bagged the over–all championship for the secondary category while the Division of Tawi-Tawi and Maguindanao I grabbed the second and third place, respectively. Maguindanao II Division emerged as over-all champion for the elementary category and the Division of Tawi-Tawi and Lamitan City landed on the second and third spot, respectively.
Winners from the various team and individual sports events will represent the region in the upcoming Palarong Pambansa on the first week of May in Tagum City, Davao del Norte. (Bureau of Public Information)