Despite TRO, UP swimmer may not be allowed to compete
MANILA, Philippines – The UAAP Board respects the temporary restraining order (TRO) acquired by University of the Philippines (UP) swimmer Mikee Bartolome against their two-year residency rule, but it remains to be seen if she can suit up for her school in this year’s competition.
The Quezon City regional trial court branch 226 on Tuesday granted the request of Bartolome’s father, Vic, for a TRO against the UAAP’s controversial residency rule, which mandates an athlete transferring from one UAAP school to another to serve a two-year residency period.
The 20-day TRO covers the UAAP swimming competition, scheduled for September 19-22, which would have allowed Bartolome to compete for UP.
But it is doubtful if Bartolome can compete after all, as UAAP secretary-treasurer Malou Isip said the league will now revert to their old rule, which states that transferee athletes have to serve a one-year residency or secure a release from their old school – in Bartolome’s case, the University of Santo Tomas.
“May old rule kasi kami of one-year residency,” said Isip, who also declined to comment on the TRO as the case is still ongoing.
When asked if Bartolome still cannot swim this season, Isip replied: “Oo, unless i-release siya ng UST. And ang UST kasi, may no-release policy ang UST.”
Isip confirmed that the official stand of the UAAP is that Bartolome still cannot play for UP this season, but stressed that the league respects the TRO.
“For now, kung ano ang TRO, ire-respeto naming ang TRO. We will wait and see tomorrow (Thursday), if the swimmer is included in their line-up,” she added.
The UAAP Board will screen the athletes competing in the swimming competitions on Wednesday.