COTABATO CITY –Early morning rains did not stop athletes from warming up for the second day (Saturday) of the regional competition at the Bangsamoro Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (BARMM) Athletic Association sports events here.
The Palarong BARMMAA started with a late Thursday afternoon parade from the city plaza to the Cotabato State University (CSU) grounds here.
By weekend, everyone was praying for fine weather even as super typhoon Betty that was threatening to dump heavy rains into the country.
Bangsamoro Chief Minister Ahod Balawag Ebrahim welcomed the athletes and their 11-division delegations from five provinces, three cities and the 63-barangay Special Geographic Area (SGA) of the BARMM.
Some 7,000 athletes are competing in the Palarong BARMAA events that also include Arnis, Sirat Karambit and Sepak Takraw.
The athletes have come all the way from Basilan, Lamitan City, Cotabato City, Marawi City, Lanao del Sur, Maguindanao, Sulu and Tawi-Tawi.
Education Minister Mohagher Iqbal said sports development is one of the “most important part of education,’ as it helps “develop, psychological, intellectual mental and physical upbringing of the youth,” adding that “sports is an activity of discipline. Being part of the overall education, we have made sports as one of the most important activity of the Ministry of Basic, Higher and Technical Education (MBHTE)” in BARMM.
From the early tallies of medals standing, Tawi-Tawi early won three gold medals for the elementary boys, secondary boys and secondary girls in the 1,500-meter track-and-field at the Cotabato State University vast track-and-field ground here.
Maguindanao first division had won one gold medal for elementary girls. Maguindanao second division; and Maguindanao first division had one bronze medal each for the elementary category.
Cotabato City won the gold for elementary boys, and a gold medal also went to Lanao del Sur for high school girls.
Team Tawi-Tawi won their first gold medal for the secondary girls in the 3,000-meter run and for the secondary boys in the 5,000 meter track-and-field
Manilyn Muloc, a Grade 7 Student of Pagasinan National High School in Bongao, Tawi-Tawi clinched not only one but two gold medals for
leading both the 1,500-meter and 3,000-meter run.
At a young age, Manilyn trained as a middle- and long-distance runner in the tutelage of her grandfather, according to Al-Trekee Dayan, a
resident of Tawi-Tawi.
In the elementary category, the Tawi-Tawi BARMAA delegation had one of its first gold medals won by Jademel Anji for the 1,500 meter run.
Jademel is a Grade-VI pupil of Butun Elementary School, Tandubas, Tawi-Tawi.