By Michael Angelo S. Murillo, Senior Reporter
GIVEN the opportunity to set in order affairs of the local volleyball community, officials of the Philippine National Volleyball Federation, Inc. (PNVFI) expressed their determination to make things work under the newly created sports body.
In separate radio and television interviews last weekend, PNVFI president Ramon “Tats” Suzara and board member Charo Soriano shared their thoughts on the creation of the PNVFI and their plans for the federation moving forward.
Mr. Suzara and Ms. Soriano were part of the batch of officers elected by stakeholders in proceedings held on Jan. 25.
The PNVFI replaced the Larong Volleyball ng Pilipinas Inc. (LVPI) as the federation representing the sport in the country.
The LVPI was in charge of Philippine volleyball affairs since 2015, but its tenure was anything but smooth as other stakeholders, particularly the Philippine Volleyball Federation, questioned its existence.
The situation prompted the International Volleyball Federation (FIVB) to seek the help of the Philippine Olympic Committee (POC) to supervise an election for a “legitimate” national sports association to settle the matter once and for all — resulting in the creation of the PNVFI.
“This is good for the sport. It’s no secret that there were disputes in the past on who will lead the community. Stakeholders really did not know who to listen to. So now, I’m happy there is more clarity,” said Ms. Soriano, a former player and co-founder of the Beach Volleyball Republic, on The Chasedown television program on One PH last Saturday.
“The federation (PNVFI) is inclusive and listens to different voices. Stakeholders come from different group and areas of the country. Of course, we disagree on certain issues, but I think it’s good as we get to discuss and work things out to better serve the community,” she added.
Ms. Soriano went on to say that for her part, she hopes to do more for the grassroots development of the sport in the country and is looking forward to communicating with other stakeholders to listen to them and work on different programs.
Mr. Suzara, meanwhile, shared the same sentiment on the Power & Play with Noli Eala radio program also on Saturday, underscoring that the PNVFI push is anchored on better organization and unity.
Among the plans they have is to continue the line of pushing volleyball as a widely played sport in the country through the staging of top-level competitions both for indoor and beach volleyball and other development initiatives.
The PNVFI chief is also eyeing a unified volleyball league featuring the best commercial teams and clubs to further strengthen the unification efforts among stakeholders it is pushing for.
“It can be professional, semi-professional, or a commercial league. It will have the top teams in the country participating. This is part of the unification efforts,” said Mr. Suzara.
Also in the plans of the PNVFI is to have a working organization, where the members are proactive and involved in the decision-making process to achieve the desired effect.
“We look to work with the different stakeholders and serve. All the stakeholders should participate in all the commissions and be involved,” Mr. Suzara said.
Following its election and formation, the PNVFI last week was given provisional recognition by the POC as the new federation for volleyball pending its registration with the Securities and Exchange Commission.
The PNVFI is also waiting to be recognized by the FIVB when the latter holds its general assembly this week.