Boxing’s Olympic medalist Carlo Paalam has again proved his mettle by winning a gold medal at the Southeast Asian Games (SEAG), making his hometown Cagayan de Oro City, and the country proud. Paalam shared his gratitude Monday via livestream for all those who supported him throughout his boxing career. “I may not have thanked all of you individually right now, but I am glad to represent our country,” he said. Paalam won the SEAG’s 54-kilogram (kg) boxing division against Indonesia’s Aldoms Suguro in the men’s 54-kg boxing division by a unanimous decision. Cagayan de Oro City Mayor Rolando Uy said Paalam’s success reaffirms the importance of community-based sports programs. “The city government will continue promoting grassroots sports development, both for community-based and school-based athletes,” he said. Uy said the inspiration Paalam gives to the Filipinos, especially the youth, is very important at a time Cagayan de Oro City is grappling “with mental health issues like depression.” Maricel Rivera, former communication officer of the city and Misamis Oriental province, said Paalam has gone far “from that small boy in the boxing stable of the provincial government under the administration of then Governor (and former Cagayan de Oro Mayor) Oscar Moreno. We are proud of you!’ she said. The boxer’s recent win in Cambodia was the second gold medal in his SEAG boxing history, the first was in 2019. Paalam, who is now an apprentice seaman of the Philippine Navy, already won his Olympic silver medal in the 51-kg division in 2021 and was an Asian Games bronze medalist. Meanwhile, other athletes who also brought pride to the Northern Mindanao region are Francis Alcantara and Ruben Gonzales of Cagayan de Oro City who won gold medals in tennis. The Misamis Oriental provincial government also thanked Janry Ubas from Villanueva town for winning the gold medal in the men’s long jump, and the silver medal in the men’s decathlon.
Source: Philippines News Agency