Drilon: Pacquiao asked me if it was OK to return to boxing.
Senate President Franklin Drilon on Thursday revealed that neophyte Senator Manny Pacquiao had asked him whether it was OK for the retired boxing champion to return to the ring.
“He asked me whether he can box, I said there is nothing to prevent you but you can do it in a manner that will not interfere with your job as a senator because you will be severely criticized. I said you can box during the break,” Drilon said.
According to Drilon, Pacquiao should be allowed to practice his profession as a boxer as long as it does not interfere with his duties as a lawmaker.
“I’m supporting Sen Pacquiao’s decision to box again but I hold him to his commitment that it will not be at the price of neglecting his duty as senator,” Drilon said.
Pacquiao’s promoter Bob Arum earlier said that Pacquiao is planning to return to boxing, lining up possible opponents for the fighter. He revealed possible dates on October 29 and November 5.
But Pacquiao denied talks of a fight in November insisting that his priority is his duty as an elected official.
Drilon said that if a fight materializes, he will hold Pacquiao to his commitment that he will not neglect his duties as a senator.
“I support his desire to exercise his profession as a professional boxer. As long as he remains true to his commitment that he will not allow the exercise of his profession to interfere with his Senate duties,” he reiterated.
He added that a senator is allowed to practice their profession.
“I am a lawyer, I can exercise my profession as a lawyer. A businessman can continue running his or her business while being a member of the legislature. An entertainer can continue the profession while being a member of Congress. Why should we impose a different standard to a professional boxer?” he said.
The Senate leader said he will be the first to criticize Pacquiao if he would neglect his duties.
“I will be the first one to criticize him if he does (neglect his duties). As I am a lawyer, he is a professional boxer, we can both exercise our profession as long as we give priority to our duty as a duly elected senator of the land,” he said.
Pacquiao has been criticized for his absenteeism while serving two terms as a representative of Sarangani.
Records from the House of Representatives showed that from July 27, 2015 to June 6, 2016, Pacquiao attended only one session and had 16 absences “without notice” for the entire duration of the 16th Congress’ third and final regular session.
But the neophyte senator has promised that he will try to post perfect attendance at the Senate.
Pacquiao usually trains for six to eight weeks in the Philippines before flying to Los Angeles for further training. —JST, GMA News
excerpt from gma news