UE President Steps Down as UAAP Chairman for Season 86
University of the East president Dr. Zosimo M. Battad has tendered his resignation as the UAAP Chairman of the Board of Trustees for Season 86. The school on Wednesday announced that Battad has informed the Board of Trustees of the UAAP that he is stepping down from his post but didn’t disclose the reason. UE said that it will release an official statement regarding the resignation soon. Curiously, Battad wrote his resignation letter a day after top rookie candidate Precious Momowei was slapped with a one-game suspension due to his second unsportsmanlike foul last Sunday against La Salle. When the reporters asked UE coach Jack Santiago about the correlation, he said he’s not aware whether the resignation of their president had something to do with Momowei’s suspension, which also disqualified him from winning the Rookie of the Year or any individual award. But Santiago said Battad called for an emergency meeting with the board to tackle the school’s appeal to reduce the penalty for their foreign student-athlete. “Honestly, I don’t know. I got a message last night to tell our athletic director to attend that meeting today. When I arrived at the Coliseum, I received a letter from our president that he resigned,” he said. “Whatever their topic was with the UAAP board, I have no idea. We just learned that he filed his resignation as chairman of the board.” The Red Warriors rallied behind their president, wearing white tapes with a ‘Free P’ and ‘Pres. Battad’ on their jerseys in their 80-74 loss to the Ateneo Blue Eagles at Mall of Asia Arena. “We support the decision of the school president. I just want to take this opportunity to thank the supporters, the school community for not giving up on the kids, because it’s really unfair for them,” Santiago said. “But of course, at the end of the day, we still have a committee who decides hopefully this will be a learning experience for us coming next season.” UE is no longer in Final Four contention with a 4-9 record, playing its last game of the season against Adamson on Sunday.