PRESIDENTIAL aspirant Sen. Emmanuel “Manny” Pacquiao made a bold statement in Cebu City on Sunday, Sept. 26, 2021, saying he decided to run for the highest elective office because he wanted to send the corrupt government officials to jail.
“Nagdesisyon ko nga modagan kay kahibaw ko sa akong buhaton. Mao gyud na akong pangandoy nga makita sila sa prisohan nga mag-uban ba (I decided to run because I know what I’m doing. That’s my aim, to see them together in jail),” he said in his speech during the Promdi kickoff event at Radisson Blu Hotel in Cebu City.
Pacquiao said he is not attacking his erstwhile ally, President Rodrigo Duterte, but he is telling him about what is happening in the government.
Pacquiao criticized individuals and politicians who profited from the Covid-19 pandemic.
The boxing icon was endorsed by the Probinsya Muna Development Initiative (Promdi), the regional party founded by the late Cebu governor Emilio Mariano “Lito” Osmeña Jr. that was relaunched as Abag-Promdi at the event Sunday.
Pacquiao took his oath as the newest member of Abag-Promdi before the party’s president Mimo Osmeña, the son of Lito.
In his opening speech, Mimo said “a new type of leadership” is needed—a “leader who understands the needs of the people, a leader who follows his heart.”
“We need a champion who will fight for freedom, freedom from poverty, freedom from sickness and freedom from fear,” Mimo said.
Pacquiao also became the president of the Abag-Promdi national council.
The senator belongs to the Partido Demokratiko Pilipino Lakas ng Bayan (PDP-Laban) faction led by Sen. Aquilino “Koko” Pimentel III.
In a brief interview with reporters after the event, Pacquiao said he will soon announce the candidates in Cebu City and Cebu Province whom he will support in the upcoming elections.
Cebu City Association of Barangay Councils President and City Councilor Franklyn Ong was in attendance during the kickoff event of the Abag-Promdi party.
Ong said he will issue a statement later to explain his presence.
Ong is an ally of former Cebu City mayor Tomas Osmeña, the head of local party Bando Osmeña Pundok Kauswagan and a known friend of Pacquiao.
Some 50 barangay captains in Cebu also attended the event. (with AYB)