If elected senator, Pacquiao vows to give up one of other careers
Sarangani Representative and boxing champion Manny Pacquiao said he would give up one of his careers should he win as senator so he could be more active in Congress.
In an interview late Tuesday night, Pacquiao said becoming a nationally-elected senator is a more daunting task than being a congressman.
Pacquiao is a perennial absentee in the House of Representatives, having been “deemed present”—meaning his absences were excused—for three days. He spent 25 days on “constituency work” and registered two unexcused absences.
“Malaking responsibilidad, kailangan mag focus na sa trabaho. Kaya nga matagal ako nagdesisyon,” Pacquiao said.
(It’s a big responsibility, and I need to focus on my work. That’s why it took me a while to decide.)
“Pinagisipan natin ‘yan, kung ano ‘yung I give-up ko sa mga pinagkakaabalahan ko, to focus on serving the people,” he added.
(I am still contemplating which of my activities I will give up to focus on serving the people.)
Pacquiao said he would have to give up one of his careers should he win as senator. He is a boxer, basketball player, businessman and product endorser, among others.
“Kailangan kong talikuran, i-give up ‘yung ibang mga pinagkakaabalahan ko (I need to turn my back on some of my activities) to focus to serve the people,” Pacquiao said, though he refused to say which.
Pacquiao reiterated his position that although he is absent in Congress, he is active helping in his district.
READ: 4: Number of days Pacquiao reported in Congress in 2014
“Kung paguusapan natin law, mayroon pa bang law na hindi natin naipasa para makaahon ang mga mahihirap? Although di ako nakikita sa Kongreso, palagi ako sa distrito ko, marami akong nagawa. Nag-state of the district address ako, nilatag ko accomplishment ko sa dalawang termino. Satisfied naman lahat. Masaya sila sa nakita nila,” Pacquiao said.
(If we are talking about laws, is there still a law that has yet to be passed to improve the lives of the poor? Although I am absent at Congress, I am always in my district, doing a lot of things. I had my state of the district address, where I bared my accomplishments in my two terms. The people were satisfied. They were happy with what they saw.)
He confirmed his plan to run as senator in 2016 and that he is being courted by all parties. Among them are Mar Roxas’ Liberal Party, Vice President Jejomar Binay’s United Nationalist Alliance, and Senator Grace Poe’s independent slate.
Pacquiao said he is open to becoming a common candidate by all parties.
READ: Pacquiao to seek Senate seat but no party yet
He admitted though that the Vice President talked to him Monday upon hearing of his plan to run as senator. He refused to give details.
“Magkasama kami, wala pang decision kung ano. Abangan na lang pag-file ng aking certificate of candidacy,” Pacquiao said.
(We were together, but I have not come up with a decision yet. Just wait until I file my certificate of candidacy.)
Binay has expressed confidence that Pacquiao, who aligned with UNA when he ran in 2013, vowed never to leave the party. Pacquiao was also seen during the launching of UNA as a political party last July, but he said he has not taken his oath.
Pacquiao said he would endorse a candidate who knows the experience of being poor. He recounts having to sleep on a cart when he was young at a time his family was stuck in poverty.
“Ang kinokonsider kong kandidato, ‘yung nararamdaman ‘yung nararamdamn ng mga mahihirap. Kaya ko nasabi ‘yan kasi doon ako galing, batang natutulog sa bangketa, ngayon nakatanggap ng ganitong karangalan, hindi ko makakalimutan,” Pacquiao said.
(I prefer a candidate who knows what it’s like to be poor. I said that because I came from poverty. As a child, I would sleep on the streets, and I would never forget that even after receiving all these recognitions.)
“Tuwing naakakita ako ng mahihirap na tao, nanlilimos, ‘Sir, pahinging tulong,’ nafifeel ko ‘yung nararamdaman nila. Kasi mahirap rin kami nuon, nagutom rin kami,” he added.
(Every time I see poor people begging or asking for my help, I feel what they are feeling. We were also poor and hungry then.)
“I will announce sa tamang panahon ang pagpili ng kandidato (I will announce in the right time the candidate I will be supporting).” IDL
Subscribe to our daily newsletter
Subscribe to INQUIRER PLUS to get access to The Philippine Daily Inquirer & other 70+ titles, share up to 5 gadgets, listen to the news, download as early as 4am & share articles on social media. Call 896 6000.