Manny Pacquiao, the world’s most famous boxer, has stated that he will run for president of the Philippines next year. Pacquiao has been raging about corruption in the Philippines government and what he deems President Rodrigo Duterte’s tight ties with China, both in and out of the ring.
According to CNN, Pacquiao accepted his political allies’ candidacy during the national assembly of the PDP-Laban Party group he represents, just days after a competing faction selected Duterte’s longtime adviser, Sen. Christopher “Bong” Go, as its presidential candidate. Duterte was nominated for vice president by that faction, which critics saw as a cynical maneuver by Duterte to keep power. Although Go denied the nomination, tensions between the Pacquiao and Duterte camps have grown.
“I am a fighter, and I will always be a fighter inside and outside the ring. I am accepting your nomination as candidate for president of the Republic of the Philippines,” Pacquiao told the crowd.
Along with Sen. Aquilino “Koko” Pimentel III, the 42-year-old boxer is already a senator in his own nation and president of the PDP-Laban faction. Pacquiao and Duterte were formerly pals, according to CNN, but the boxer has since accused the current administration of corruption. Part of the corruption charges stem from the disappearance of $200 million in pandemic relief intended for disadvantaged families.
The Philippines Senate has opened an investigation into alleged overpricing of medical supplies and equipment purchased under the government’s pandemic response program. Pacquiao’s anti-corruption crusade comes as the Philippines Senate has opened an investigation into alleged overpricing of medical supplies and equipment purchased under the government’s pandemic response program. Pacquiao has always been a man of the people, contributing his boxing riches to the development of his homeland. In 2016, he built and gave away 1,000 homes in the Philippines to the impoverished and homeless.