Mitra: Staging of Filbasket tournament declared 'unlawful'

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UNLESS it conducts itself as a professional tournament that is under the supervision of the Games and Amusements Board (GAB), it appears that the Filbasket tournament will just be a one and done affair.

This, after the Office of the President declared the staging of the said competition in Subic from Oct. 25 to Nov. 24 as unlawful. GAB chairman Baham Mitra confirmed this according to a report on Mitra then issued a stern warning to organizers of the league to refrain from staging another tournament unless it is held under the supervision of the organization that governs professional sports in the Philippines.

“Filbasket’s previous defiance was ill-advised as the rules on this matter are already well-established. GAB’s advice to organizers is to comply with the law and GAB will always be there to assist in any way it can within the bounds of its mandate,” said Mitra.

GAB labelled the Filbasket league as a professional tournament since its players were receiving salaries. This prompted Mitra and his board to file a cease and desist order against the league founded by former pro player Jai Reyes as it allegedly violated Presidential Decree (PD) 871, which is the law that places professional basketball under the supervision of GAB.

However, Filbasket appealed to the Office of the President but later withdrew it after the league completed its first season that saw AICC Manila come away with the title after vanquishing the San Juan Knights in the finals.

“The Office of the President declared their appeal as deemed withdrawn. So the case is closed there,” Mitra stressed. “But even if Filbasket withdrew its appeal, any similar violation of PD 871 by Filbasket or other pro leagues, will be dealt with in accordance with the law.”

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