PHL flag raised in athletes' village in Rio for 2016 Olympics
The Philippine team made its formal entry in the 2016 Summer Olympics on Thursday by hoisting the Philippine national flag in the athletes' village in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.
In a "Balitanghali" report, the Philippine flag was seen flying proudly between Switzerland and Japan's flags two days before the formal kick-off of the Olympic Games on August 5 in Rio (August 6 in the Philippines).
Filipino officials and athletes, wearing the traditional Filipino attire Barong Tagalog, raised the flag while enjoying a fiesta-like atmosphere at the Olympic Park in Brazil.
Rogen Ladon, one of two Philippine boxers competing in the Olympics, said they are completely focused on the games and in bringing home the elusive Olympic gold.
The Philippines has had two silver medalists and seven bronze medalists since the country started participating in the games in 1924.
President Rodrigo Duterte on July 18 surprised the Philippine contingent with a big sendoff by increasing the allowance per athlete from $1,000 each to $3,000 each.
Olympic coaches also received a raise, from $3,000 to $5,000 allowance per person.
Duterte also hinted that gold medal winners may receive more than the P10 million reward set by law, joking that he might even grant them an island.
He also praised them for being one of the few to be "given an opportunity to be part of a team or work for government.” — Rie Takumi/VVP, GMA News