CAGAYAN DE ORO CITY: Boxing icon and Sarangani Rep. Manny Pacquiao vowed to work for the creation of a separate and independent Department of Culture and Sports once he is given the chance to serve as senator of the country.
Pacquiao made the statement during his visit to the Xavier University College of Law where he was invited as guest speaker.
“How can we achieve our dream of winning an Olympic gold medal when the national government continues to neglect sports in this country?” he told The Manila Times in an interview.
According to him, many sports heroes have brought pride and honor to the country through innate talent and sheer determination without adequate support from the government.
“It’s high time for us to review our existing national sports program, then make the necessary actions to breathe new life into our ailing sports community,” Pacquiao said
During his speech before the students and members of the faculty, he pledged to help upgrade the library of the Xavier University College of Law.
Pacquiao did not say how much he is going to donate as it will depend on the proposal that will be submitted by the dean of the College of Law.
Four years ago, Xavier University Law School was cited as an “Outstanding Law School” by the Legal Education Board of the Supreme Court of the Philippines.
It was recognized as one of the 10 best-performing law schools in the Philippines from 2001 to 2011.
Dean Raul Villanueva, also named as an outstanding law dean, said they would still determine their priority in upgrading and improving their existing library.
When asked what would be their priority, Villanueva said in a text message, “I’ve to consult with the professors, students and librarian. I can answer you within the week.”
Villanueva extended his gratitude to Pacquiao for his generosity.
In the same speech, the boxer-lawmaker enumerated his advocacies once he is elected senator.
“First and foremost, Manny Pacquiao wants to fight and win the battle against illiteracy. I offer my services as the champion of quality free public education from elementary all the way to college,” Pacquiao said.
He added that ensuring free public education from elementary to college would help poor families send their children to school, thus enabling them to overcome poverty.
Education, Pacquiao said, is a great social equalizer.
According to the boxing icon, his other advocacies once he gets to the Senate include championing the rights of abused and oppressed overseas Filipino workers (OFWs), pushing for a just and meaningful peace in Mindanao and fighting for the interest of farmers by asking government to provide them subsidies and incentives.