Pres. Duterte urges athletes to contribute in nation building

“This is the beginning of your greater participation in nation building.” These were the words of President Rodrigo Roa Duterte during his speech in the opening ceremony of the 2018 Palarong Pambansa at the Quirino Stadium, Bantay, Ilocos Sur held on April 15. Speaking in front of over 12 thousand athletes, coaches and spectators from the different regions, Duterte encouraged the athletes to enhance their skills at the same time embody good values. “I look forward to more significant contributions to the society in the days to come,” he added. He also talked about the ability of the students to balance their academics and other interests in which they will learn several skills such as multi-tasking, decision-making and time management – skills that are crucial for their future. In addition, Youth Olympic gold medalist in archery Gabriel Moreno led the lighting of the cauldron using his bow and arrow. Meanwhile, DepEd Secretary Leonor M. Briones awarded the Lifetime Achievement Award to Lydia De Vega-Mercado, Asia’s fastest woman in the 1980s. De Vega-Mercado’s daughter, Stephanie, received the award on her mother’s behalf. The ceremony ended with a spectacular fireworks display./Andrew Catayao III