Senator Manny Pacquiao vehemently denied talking to Top Rank promoter Bob Arum about any ambitions to run for presidency in 2023.
In a report by The Manila Times, the 41-year-old rookie lawmaker cleared that the conversation he had with Arum was only about a potential bout with fellow welterweight champion Terrence Crawford, who is under the Top Rank banner.
“As far as I know, we never talked about politics.
“The last time we talked on Zoom, Bob only discussed possible fight schedules but never about politics. Our discussion was all about boxing,” he said.
Last Sunday, Arum claimed in a Zoom talk with World Boxing Council head Mauricio Sulaiman that Pacquiao personally told him that he would run for the country’s top post in the 2023 elections.
“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’.”
A bout with Crawford is one of the many potential fights Pacquiao has been offered. Also on the table is a middleweight showdown with Gennady Golovkin.
All that is just talk, however, since Pacquiao believes that he needs to focus on the task at hand — to help lift the country amid the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.
“Hindi panahon ng politika ngayon.
“Sa dami ng problema ng bansa, ang kailangan natin ay pagkakaisa at pagtutulungan para maibsan ang paghihirap ng ating mga kababayan,” said Pacquiao, who, together with good pal Jack Ma, has been purchasing much-needed equipment to combat the virus.
“Kailangan natin pagkakaisa. Let’s unite para matulungan ang mga kababayan natin. Ang daming walang trabaho ngayon, lalo na ang ating mga OFWS. Kailangan po ng ating bansa ngayon ay hindi politika,” he closed.