Senator Manny Pacquiao
By Tracy Cabrera
CALLING for the investigation of all alleged irregularities in government’s response to the ongoing coronavirus pandemic, Pinoy boxing icon and fighting senator Emmanuel ‘Manny’ Pacquiao defended President Rodrigo Duterte by saying to critics not to put all the blame on the chief executive.
Pacquiao came to Duterte’s defense after Senator Risa Hontiveros brought up corruption allegations being committed allegedly by members of Duterte’s Cabinet amidst the ongoing pandemic that has claimed more than 2,000 deaths from the total confirmed Covid-19 cases of 106,000 as of August 3.
“Sabi nga ng World Bank, panahon ng pandemia, mas madaling mangurakot ng pera. Kung may ebidensya ng overpricing, kung may ebidensya ng pagsasamantala, kailangan panagutin,” Hontiveros had said in a privilege speech.
“Likewise, incompetence should also not be tolerated. The people need confidence in [their] leaders to shepherd them through uncertain times. They do not need a PhilHealth scandal. They do not need inept DOH leadership. They do not (need) the highest officials of the land claiming to be inutile in the middle of a pandemic,” the lady senator added.
And while being interpolated by Pacquiao after her speech, Hontiveros reiterated the need to investigate and expose those who make money from the pandemic such as the alleged overpricing of Covid-19 health supplies.
At this point, Pacquiao agreed that such irregularities must be investigated, saying it would be ‘unfair’ to blame the President for any alleged wrongdoings of his officials.
“I agree with that na kailangang imbestigahan kasi unfair to the President who might not know the situation . . . what’s happening on the ground right now, especially lahat ng mga ginagawa ng mga tauhan niya,” the People’s Champ pointed out.
“So kailangan siguro nating imbestigahan pero hindi siguro natin kailangan na i-blame lahat sa ating Pangulo kundi aksyunan, ipaalam natin sa Pangulo dahil alam ko si Mr. President, kilala ko ang ating mahal na Pangulo, ako na mismo magsabi sa inyo, kilala ko ang ating mahal na pangulo, mula pa noon bago siya naging Presidente,” he enthused.
Pacquiao assured the public that Duterte would not condone any wrongdoings as he treats corruption allegations in the same level of illegal drugs.