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POC urged to call "extraordinary general assembly" to resolve row

By Ivan Saldajeno

MANILA—The International Olympic Committee and the Olympic Council of Asia asked the Philippine Olympic Committee to organize an "extraordinary general assembly" in hopes of finally putting to an end the drama within the local body.

In a letter signed by IOC's director of Olympic Solidarity and national Olympic committee relations James MacLeod and OCA director general Husain Al-Musallam, both organizations said that the POC should hold the assembly after it clarifies who will step down from their respective posts.

Almost the entire POC executive board, including president Joey Romasanta and chairman Bambol Tolentino, verbally expressed their resignation in a general assembly last week while pushing for a snap election on Friday.

[Related Story: Snap POC election set for July 5]

But such resignations can only be finalized through official letters, something the IOC and the OCA are requesting.

The letter added, "The IOC and the OCA will send an observer to attend this extraordinary general assembly."

They then asked the POC not to make "any further unilateral decision/action without prior consultation" with them.

The IOC and the OCA also told the POC to coordinate with them to assure that due process will be followed in line with the POC constitution and the Olympic charter.

Should the POC fail to coordinate, the IOC said, "The IOC will reserve the right to take appropriate action vis-a-vis the POC."

The ongoing leadership row within the POC stemmed from the revelation that former POC president Ricky Vargas was among the incorporators of the Philippine SEA Games Organizing Committee Foundation, which was disagreed upon by a majority of the executive board members.

Vargas has since resigned as a PHISGOC incorporator and the POC president.

Follow him on Twitter: @IvanSaldajeno