Pacquiao after meeting with Duterte: ‘No backing out; fight for presidency continues’
MANILA, Philippines — Senator Manny Pacquiao said he is not backing out of the presidential race after meeting with President Rodrigo Duterte amid the infighting with the ruling PDP-Laban party.
Pacquiao said his meeting with Duterte was not a “political meeting” but rather an opportunity to “talk about our shared vision for Mindanao.”
“Walang atrasan. Tuloy ang laban (There’s no backing out. The fight continues). The meeting with the President was arranged by common friends,” Pacquiao said in a statement.
“Hindi nagbabago ang paninindigan ko sa pagtakbo bilang Pangulo, ipakulong ang mga kawatan, at iangat ang buhay ng mga mahihirap nating kababayan. Hindi ako trapo mag-isip. Ang panalo ko ang magpapanalo sa buhay ng bawat Pilipino,” he added.
(My stand to run for president remains firm. I will jail those erring individuals and improve the lives of our poor countrymen. My win is the win of every Filipino.)
Duterte and Pacquiao, who belong to feuding factions within the ruling PDP-Laban party, met Tuesday night in Malacañang. It was the first time that the two met since the infighting within the party.
According to Senator Bong Go, who was present during the meeting, the event was “very quick” and was held at the request of Pacquiao’s camp.
“Kamustahan lang. Maikli na usapan. Renewal of friendship. Walang politika. [Importante] nagkausap sila ni [President Duterte]. Kami naman ni Manny, kaibigan naman kami [and] kumpare,” Go told reporters in a message.
(Just a simple meeting. Renewal of friendship, no politics. What’s important is they talked. And for me and Manny, we are friends.)
Duterte and Pacquiao have been at odds with one another since after the senator criticized the president’s “lacking” stance on the country’s sea dispute with China.
Duterte retaliated and told Pacquiao to “study first.”
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