PATAFA President Philip Ella Juico. — PHILIPPINE STAR FILE PHOTO

THERE is now peace on the Philippine sports front now.

The Philippine Olympic Committee (POC) has withdrawn its 90-day suspension on the Philippine Athletics Track and Field Association (PATAFA) and the persona non grata tag on the latter’s president Philip Ella Juico during its emergency executive board meeting on Monday.

It both came in the aftermath of Mr. Juico and the PATAFA board and Asian pole vault record-holder Ernest John “EJ” Obiena smoking the peace pipe after months of conflict.

“The Executive Board of the POC fulfilled its gentlemanly pronouncement and has lifted the two resolutions rendered by the POC on the PATAFA,” said POC President Abraham Tolentino.

“The lifting of the resolutions hinged on the successful mediation between pole-vaulter EJ Obiena and the PATAFA,” he added.

After mending fences following the mediation initiated by Philippine Sports Commission chairman William Ramirez, PATAFA has reinstated Mr. Obiena into the national team.

As a result, the World No. 5 was endorsed to international meets like the Hanoi Southeast Asian Games set on May 12 to 23 and the World Championships scheduled on July 15 to 24 in Eugene, Oregon in the United States.

“As projected, there were no objections and the motions of lifting were to be considered unanimous,” said the congressman from Tagaytay. “It is therefore with great relief to announce that the POC hereby lifts the resolution declaring Mr. Juico as persona non grata and also the resolution suspending PATAFA as member of the POC,” he added.

With the lifting of both sanctions, Mr. Tolentino said Mr. Juico and PATAFA could resume their active status with the POC.

“As I have maintained even before, there are no losers but only winners. The main winner being the Filipino athlete,” he said. — Joey Villar