Boxer Manny Pacquiao reportedly may run for president in Philippines as he leans on faith

Boxer Manny Pacquiao has established himself as a legend in his sport, accumulating a career record of 62-7-2 with 39 knockouts. He’s 41 years old and last fought in July 2019, but if it weren’t for the coronavirus pandemic, he would have already logged another bout in 2020. The WBA welterweight champion, Pacquiao is expected to defend that title before the year is up.

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He’s also a legend in his homeland of the Philippines. He became a member of the House of Representatives in 2010, and received more than 16 million votes to join the Philippine Senate in 2016.

With his current term set to end in June 2022, many Filipinos are hoping he’ll next run for president. The country’s election to decide the successor for current leader Rodrigo Duterte is scheduled for May 9, 2022. According to his former promoter, Bob Arum, Pacquiao plans to run for the president’s office.

“The first president I think we’ll get as a fighter is little Manny Pacquiao, who told me, once again. I did a Zoom telephone call with him, ‘Bob, I’m gonna run in 2022 and, when I win, I want you there at my inauguration,’” Arum told WBC president Mauricio Sulaiman, according to The Sun.

The speculation about Pacquiao running for his country’s presidency is not new. However, Pacquiao said Monday that he hasn’t discussed politics with Arum. According to The Manila Times, via BoxingScene.com, the last Zoom conversation he had with Arum was about possible fight schedules and nothing more than boxing.

“This is not the time for politics,” Pacquiao said. “The country has so much problems, what we need is unity and cooperation in order to mitigate the difficulties of our countrymen. We need to unite. Let’s unite so we can help our countrymen. Many have lost their jobs, especially overseas Filipino workers. Politics is not what we need now.”

Pacquiao, who has long spoken publicly about his faith in Christ, says what people need is the Bible.

“The Bible is the only book we need to discover the foundational truth of how to know and walk with God,” Pacquiao said at an event in January, after he helped author a law declaring the last Monday of January to be National Bible Day in the Philippines. He added, “Read the Bible because it will lead you to all truth. The Bible is the manual to life.”

Pacquiao also talked about the death of basketball legend Kobe Bryant. “Life is too short in this world. So make sure you have a personal relationship to God. You have a strong relationship and you obey God,” he said.

Pacquiao further expressed his faith in an interview last year with CBN News.

“Read the Bible continually, pray continually … until when? As long as you are still alive on this earth. You are forming your destiny which way you go, either eternal suffering or eternal happiness,” he said.

In the midst of the worldwide pandemic, Pacquiao has been able to maintain his fitness. His current trainer, Buboy Fernandez, says Pacquiao will be quick to get in shape for whenever his next fight is booked.

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