Legendary boxer Manny Pacquiao believes that President Rodrigo Duterte is involved in corruption, but is criticized as shallow knowledge.

The conflict between boxer and Senator Manny Pacquiao and President Duterte has been public since June 2021. Pacquiao accused the head of the Philippine government of being involved in corruption and lacking a firm stance on the South China Sea.

In response, Duterte said that Pacquiao had a “shallow” understanding of the South China Sea, and challenged the leading opponent in the 2022 Philippine presidential race to name corrupt government agencies. “If he can’t do it, he’s a liar,” the Philippine leader said.

Pacquiao is emerging as the political rival of outgoing President Duterte.  Photo: Inguirer

Pacquiao is emerging as the political rival of outgoing President Duterte. Image: Inguirer

Pacquiao and Duterte are both members of the PDP-Laban party. The middleweight boxing legend has been a passionate supporter of the President’s policies on the war on drugs and efforts to reintroduce the death penalty.

This relationship fractured when Duterte was unable to be re-elected president after a six-year term, according to the Philippine Constitution. The 76-year-old leader supports his daughter Sara Duterte-Carpio, but she lags in both fame and influence compared to Pacquiao.

Another way for Duterte to stay in power is to run for the position of Vice President, while supporting his right hand – Senator Christopher Go – to run for President. If Pacquiao gets in the middle of these calculations, Duterte risks leaving politics after the 2022 elections.

President Duterte himself is losing points in the eyes of the people, after the statement: “Get a vaccine or go to jail”. This message contradicts what the Philippine health official said earlier, that the Covid-19 vaccination is voluntary.

Duterte then explained that he wanted to control the outbreak of Covid-19 in the Philippines, especially when the number of people vaccinating at some points in the capital Manila was at a record low.

Before Duterte’s reactions, Pacquiao avoided direct confrontation. He is training with coach Freddie Roach in Los Angeles, to fight Errol Spence on August 21. This is Pacquiao’s first fight since his fight with Keith Thurman in July 2019.

“Right now I’m just focusing on the match against Spence. Maybe that’s what they want?” Pacquiao told DZBB. “I sensed a conspiracy. They slandered me many things, misled the public, even blamed crimes on me. I was surprised, because I had never stolen anything. I didn’t. ashamed of conscience”.

Pacquiao is actively training in Los Angeles, USA to prepare for the fight in mid-August.  Photo: Marca

Pacquiao is actively training in Los Angeles, USA to prepare for the fight in mid-August. Image: Marca

When asked about his political career, the middleweight boxing legend added: “I just do what my heart tells me. I have to live up to what was promised to the Filipino people. I will fight for it. poor people, and that’s what I want. Is it my fault to uphold the truth?”

Pacquiao is the only boxer in history to be world champion in eight different weight classes. After beating Thurman by points two years ago, he set another record: The oldest boxer to win the welterweight belt in one of the four largest boxing organizations in the world.

Extending his professional boxing journey to the 26th year, but Pacquiao will lose a loyal fan – President Duterte. He threatened: “Don’t think, if he wins and becomes President, he will wipe out corruption in the Philippines. What is the guarantee, that this is not a political game? Do your job as a Senator well. Doctor. Sit down in Congress, and stop doing other things. Being a boxing champion doesn’t mean he’s a champion in politics.”

Hoai No (according to the Marca)


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