Sarangani Rep. Emmanuel “Manny” Pacquiao will remain in the corner of Vice President Jejomar Binay.
In a news conference in General Santos City on Friday, Pacquiao said he will be backing Binay—the standard-bearer of the opposition United Nationalist Alliance (UNA—“without reservation.”
“All-out support tayo kay VP Binay. Hindi magbabago ‘yan [I am all for Vice President Binay. That won’t change],” Pacquiao, one of UNA’s senatorial candidates, said.
“May isang salita tayo [You have my word],” he added.
Pacquiao, the only boxer to win world titles in eight different weight classes, joined Binay in a boodle fight and a scouting trip at Colon National High in Maasim, Sarangani, for the 4th Council Jamboree of the Boy Scouts of the Philippines.
His pronouncement contradicts his statement last month, when he said he is inclined to join the senatorial slate of Davao City Mayor Rodrigo Duterte because the mayor is a fellow Mindanaoan.
Duterte was a reluctant candidate until recently. The mayor filed his certificate of candidacy as a subsitute candidate for President of PDP-Laban.
Pacquiao told reporters a month ago that he prefers Binay among the presidential candidates because both of them worked hard to break away from poverty.
“Pareho kaming galing sa mahirap na pamilya, pareho kaming naghikahos. Pareho rin kaming nagsikap para makarating sa ganitong estado at pareho kaming naniniwalang magsisilbing inspirasyon sa mahirap [We both came from a poor family. We struggled getting by…went through a lot to get where we are. We believe that we can inspire the poor],” he said.