By Michael Angelo S. Murillo, Senior Reporter
NEWLY formed Philippine National Volleyball Federation, Inc. (PNVFI) has been officially recognized by the sport’s international governing body.
On the final day of its world congress done online on Sunday, the International Volleyball Federation (FIVB) moved to accept the Ramon Suzara-headed PNVFI to its fold and make the latter Philippine volleyball’s legitimate representative.
A total of 155 national federations out of a possible 190 votes approved the FIVB’s recognition of the PNVFI.
Out of a possible 190 votes, three said no, 13 abstained and 20 said they did not receive the question.
Before recognizing the PNVFI, the FIVB asked its members to vote on the PNVFI’s election as Philippine volleyball’s representative in the federation held on Jan. 25 that was overseen by the Philippine Olympic Committee (POC).
FIVB members had to answer the question, “Do you recognize the elections of the PNVFI last January 25?” The result was 151 yes, five no, 16 abstained and 18 said they did not receive the question.
With the recognition, the PNVFI replaced the Philippine Volleyball Federation (PVF) as an affiliate of FIVB.
The international federation, too, asked the members’ decision on the expulsion of the PVF as an affiliate, getting 138 yes votes, 16 no votes, 15 abstention while 22 said they did not receive the question.
PNVFI also took over from the Larong Volleyball sa Pilipinas, Inc. (LVPI), which was the local volleyball governing body recognized by the POC.
“The entire PNVF Board wishes to thank the FIVB and all the confederations for the overwhelming support during the 37th Congress,” PNVFI’s Suzara said in a statement.
“We now proudly banner the honor and the responsibility of being affiliated to both the international federation and the Asian Volleyball Confederation (AVC),” he added, referring to the Asian volleyball body which already gave its approval to the PNVFI earlier.
Mr. Suzara also thanked the POC for heeding the call of the FIVB to settle once and for all the leadership issue in Philippine volleyball through an election.
Through letters sent by the FIVB to POC President Abraham Tolentino, the international federation reiterated the need to elect a legitimate national sports association lest the country risk not being able to send national teams to FIVB-sanctioned tournaments.
LVPI was recognized by the POC since 2015 as the national federation for the sport, but was contested by the PVF.
“Now, our work begins to fulfill our singular commitment to all stakeholders. At PNVF, we serve volleyball,” reiterated Mr. Suzara.
Other other officials of the PNVFI are Arnel Hajan (vice-president), Ariel Paredes (chairman), Donaldo Caringal (secretary-general), Rod Roque (treasurer), Yul Benosa (auditor) and board members Ricky Palou, Tony Boy Liao, Karl Chan, Charo Soriano, Carmela Gamboa, Fr. Vic Calvo, and Atty. Wharton Chan.