“Peping Cojuangco a gentleman warrior”
By Recah Trinidad
11 Oct 2012
SOMEWHERE not too far from the Rizal Memorial Coliseum, there must be some kindly souls raring to take the cudgels for the “much-maligned” president of the Philippine Olympic Committee.
One of them, squeaky and excited, was on the phone early the other day.
“I know you hate Peping Cojuangco, but how dare you call him inept and unproductive.”
What did you want me to call him?
“Anything but unproductive.”
But he has not produced a single medal from the two Olympic campaigns he had headed.
“It was not his fault. The winning materials were not there.”
Come on, it was his duty to discover talents, train and develop them into world winners.
“He did try, but they did not have the luck.”
Please, do remember what the IOC president kept saying that there could be world-class athletes only if there are world class sports leaders.
There was a pause on the other line. There were scratching sounds as though a small cabinet or luggage was being unlocked.
“Don’t forget that he was already on top when the Philippines won the overall 2005 Southeast Asian Games championship,” the squeaky voice explained. “I have the records here.”
If you look at your records, he was not totally responsible for that triumph. He was only a few months into office when Manila last hosted the SEA Games.
“Don’t muddle up the issue. The fact is he was there in command when that great thing happened.”
It was a bit surprising but the caller took time out to explain that he’s himself a great fan of Manny V. Pangilinan, the famous and respected business tycoon being pushed to contest Cojuangco in next month’s POC polls.
“The problem is you media people kept maligning Mr. Peping, while you could not run out of good things to say about MVP.”
But Cojuangco kept calling the official reports on his failures black propaganda, the caller was informed.
“Because you all sounded like a jukebox that can’t play anything pleasant for the fellow”.
The caller readily added it can’t be denied Peping Cojuangco was a very effective leader.
“If not, he would have been either defeated or booted out of office.”
He managed to stay on through schemes and manipulations.
“The fact is he had overcome his detractors and effectively parried off damaging criticisms.”
You consider that an athletic skill?
“Why not, he’s not only a great juggler but, in fact, an enviable tightrope walker.”
To top it all, the over-excited caller said Cojuangco is a gentleman warrior who’s always ready to fight to the end.
“He doesn’t ask for favors, he just loves to play it fair and square.”
That’s a little vague.
“Of course not, Peping will take on all comers, no matter the odds.”
But does Cojuangco honestly feel he could beat Mr. Pangilinan in the POC race?
“Why not, but for the race to happen, MVP must first declare he’s running.”
MVP might do just that any time soon.
“I doubt, unless the report about the majority voting for him gets validated."
What’s wrong with that?
“You call that a noble way of waging battle. MVP wanted weapons loaded in his favor. He did not want to fight.”
The good caller had a point there.
“Ok I take back my word,” he was told. “Peping is neither unproductive nor inept. But do tell him the jukebox has long gone out of mode.”
End of conversation.
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