The Integrated Bar of the Philippines Zamboanga del Norte (IBP ZN) Chapter won the overall championship in the First Annual Visayas-Mindanao Inter-Chapter SportsFest with the theme Fostering Camaraderie and Unity Through Sports held last 26-27 August 2017 at Dapitan and Dipolog City.

Delegates from the Zamboanga City-Basilan-Sulu-Tawi-Tawi (ZamBaSulTa), Lanao del Norte Chapters, which bagged the 1st and 2nd Runner-Up tilt, respectively, the Siquijor and Misamis Occidental Chapters joined the SportsFest initiated and hosted by the IBP ZN Chapter.

The event commenced at the Dapitan City Cultural and Sports Center where Dapitan City Mayor Rosalina Jalosjos delivered an inspirational message to the participants after the stunning performance of the JRMSU Lundayan Dance Troupe. IBP ZN Chapter President Kenneth Lim welcomed the delegates and formally opened the SportsFest, while Atty. Michael Ajoc administered the Oath of Sportsmanship and Amateurism. Atty. Poe Bagarinao lighted the Friendship Urn signaling the start of the fun and the competition.

The two-day sports tournament covered men’s basketball, mixed volleyball, lawn tennis, table tennis, badminton, bowling, billiards, darts, chess, and golf at various venues in Dapitan and Dipolog City.

Dipolog City Mayor Darel Uy delivered his inspirational message to the participants on the second day at Dipolog Boulevard.

The SportsFest culminated with a Closing Ceremony on the evening of August 27 at the Top Plaza Hotel, Dipolog City, which was graced by Zamboanga del Norte Provincial Governor Roberto Uy as keynote speaker. Individual and team winners for each sports category were awarded medals and trophies.

“With this event, we hope we have fulfilled our goal of fostering camaraderie and friendship through sports with our brothers and sisters in the legal profession from Visayas and Mindanao,” remarked Lim in his closing address.

With the success of the SportsFest, Atty. Florendo Opay, president of the IBP Siquijor Chapter, signified their intent of hosting the next year’s event. Attys. Ray Bongabong, David Warren Lim, and Dan Kirby Jomilla, the respective presidents of the ZamBaSulTa, Lanao del Norte, and Misamis Occidental chapters likewise expressed their interests in hosting the future games.

Retired Judge Chandler Ruiz served as the overall chairman of the SportsFest, with Atty. Olive Corrine Olvis-Lacaya as his vice chair and the coordinator of the sports chairpersons, namely: City Pros. Herminia Enero, Attys. Michael Ajoc, Carrie Nizva Refugio, Rubencio Legorio, Alfred Casipong, Juviner Gumela, Annaly Adju, John Elumba, and Chembelyn Balucan. The working committee members behind the event’s success are Judge Chad Martin Paler, Attys. Nizza Lesterio, Marian Lucille Zulueta, Diana Charlette Concha, January Faith Santiago, the sponsors, and the other chapter officers and members.

The IBP is the official mandatory organization of all Philippine lawyers whose names appear in the Roll of Attorneys of the Supreme Court. It has local chapters in all provinces and major cities nationwide.