MANILA, Philippines–The House of Representatives has approved a bill that would declare April as National Basketball Month in the Philippines.
The bill, House Bill No. 8268, was approved on third and final reading on Wednesday with 272 lawmakers voting in favor.
The proposed law was authored by Speaker Ferdinand Martin Romualdez and several other lawmakers.
It aims to commemorate the sport of basketball and its positive impact on Filipino culture and society. It also seeks to promote through basketball the importance of physical activity and a healthy lifestyle across all ages.
Under the bill, the Philippine Sports Commission, in coordination with the Philippine Olympic Committee, Department of Education, Commission on Higher Education, Games and Amusements Board, Department of the Interior and Local Government, and concerned National Sports Association, is mandated to prepare and implement an annual program of activities.
The month-long celebration will include basketball events and activities for all ages at the local parks and community centers across the country; inter-barangay basketball leagues or friendly games; free basketball training, coaching, and officiating a basketball game; exhibition or demonstration games among professional players; paralympic basketball for persons with disabilities and para-athletes; women’s participation in basketball; viewing parties for major basketball games; and virtual basketball sports or e-basketball sports.
Romualdez said the bill is a way to recognize the importance of basketball in the Philippines.
“We would like to institutionalize the annual celebration of National Basketball Month in all provinces, cities, municipalities, and barangays to promote basketball in the local government units and educational institutions,” he said.
The bill is now pending in the Senate. If it is passed by the upper chamber and signed by the President, April will become the official National Basketball Month in the Philippines.
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