CHED, partners to launch PH ROTC Games in 2023

To promote the development of sports programs and train young athletes for international competitions, the Commission on Higher Education (CHED) and its partners will launch the first-ever Philippine Reserve Officers’ Training Corps (ROTC) Games next year.

(Photo courtesy of CHED)

“ROTC is not just mobilizing young Filipinos during times of peace and war, but it also needs to produce physically fit and healthy individuals,” said CHED Chairman Popoy De Vera in a statement.

The ROTC Games, CHED said, aims to promote the development of sports programs, and physical education, foster self-discipline, teamwork, and excellence, and train young athletes for international competitions.

It also aims to “realize a common objective” of developing grassroots sports programs for the youth.

“CHED under my watch will ensure the fulfillment of our mandate, making sports as one of our priority programs to promote total human development geared towards good citizenry and the honing of world-class Filipinos,” De Vera added.

The target timeline for the first year of implementation of the Philippine ROTC Games will be in February 2023 – Commencement of recruitment/sports clinics; July 2023 – Regional ROTC Games and; August/September 2023 – National ROTC Games.

CHED said that the 2023 Philippine ROTC Games will be composed of Athletics, Swimming, Boxing, Arnis, Weightlifting, Kickboxing, E-sports, Basketball, Volleyball, Target shooting, and Demonstration Sports.

The Commission partnered with the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP), the Philippine Sports Commission (PSC), and Senator Francis Tolentino for the Philippine ROTC Games.

The ROCT Games, CHED said, is being eyed as a platform for ROTC cadets to compete in Olympic-level and NSA-sanctioned sporting events.

The partnership between the government agencies was formalized through the signing of a memorandum of agreement (MOA) in Camp Aguinaldo between Vera, Department of National Defense (DND) Officer-in-Charge and Senior Undersecretary Jose Faustino, Jr. and PSC Chairman Jose Emmanuel Eala.

Also present were AFP chief Lieutenant General Bartolome Vicente Bacarro and Sen. Francis Tolentino.

CHED said that funding for the ROTC Games was done through a budget realignment of Tolentino in the 2023 General Appropriations ACT (GAA).

“The launching of the 2023 Philippine ROTC Games signals the beginning of the quest for young Filipino athletes who will not only excel in sports but more importantly, showcase to the world that the Filipino has a heart of a champion,” said Tolentino who is a Brigadier General (reserve) in the Philippine Army.

“Our goal is to promote camaraderie, teamwork and sportsmanship, which are important in building bodily strength and character,” he added.

Aside from promoting the development of sports programs, CHED noted that the ROTC Games is also a “good initiative” for the impending approval to revive the mandatory ROTC in higher education with the recent passage of HB 6687 or the National Citizen Service Training (NCST) Bill in the House of Representatives.