Manny Pacquiao is planning to run for President of the Philippines in 2022
Mr. Manny Pacquiao, the world champion boxer, announced on Sunday that he will run for president of the Philippines next year after speaking out against corruption in the government and what he describes as President Rodrigo Duterte’s close relationship with China.
Pacquiao accepted the nomination of his political allies at the national assembly of the faction he leads within the ruling PDP-Laban party, just days after a rival faction nominated Duterte’s longtime aide, Senator Christopher “Bong” Go, to be the party’s presidential candidate. Pacquiao is the first Filipino to accept the nomination of his political allies.
This faction appointed Duterte to the position of vice president, a move that critics have characterized as Duterte’s cynical ploy to maintain control of the government.
The nomination was declined by Go; however, the rift between the Pacquiao and Duterte factions widened.
A speech delivered live at the meeting by Pacquiao, 42, a senator, was broadcast on the internet. He said: “I am and I will always be a fighter, in and out of the ring.” « I officially accept your nomination as the presidential candidate of the Republic of the Philippines. »
There has been no indication of support for Duterte’s bid for the vice presidency from the Pacquiao camp. Duterte is barred from seeking re-election to a second six-year term as president under the Philippine constitution.
Pacquiao was one of the greatest boxers of all time and the only man to hold world titles in eight different divisions during his 26-year professional career. He was also a mother to his children.
Despite his widespread popularity, Pacquiao consistently ranks second or third in opinion polls, which have been dominated by Duterte’s daughter Sara Duterte-Carpio for years.
Pacquiao was elected leader of the PDP-Laban in July, just weeks after publicly criticizing Duterte’s stance on China and anti-corruption record. However, his faction rejected Duterte’s attempt to have him removed from power.
Pacquiao, who was once a close ally of Duterte, had claimed that more than 10 billion pesos ($ 200 million) in pandemic aid for poor families had gone missing and that the money had only been discovered as a result of his corruption probe.
The Senate has opened an investigation into allegations of overpricing of medical supplies and equipment purchased as part of the government’s pandemic response program, which coincides with the launch of the administration’s anti-corruption campaign.
Pacquiao was challenged by Duterte to name corrupt government officials in order to demonstrate that the boxer was not simply playing politics ahead of the election.
Pacquiao responded by threatening corrupt government officials with prison time, saying, “Your time is up!