Philippine former boxing champion Manny Pacquiao, in a bid to consolidate his support among voters, says he’ll jail his own former allies if he is elected president.
Pacquiao made the comment Friday, during a campaign stop in Manila. He is in the race to become the Philippines’ next president.
After being given a rousing welcome by the cheering crowd, Pacquiao said that he’d make sure to jail former allies if they run against him in the May 2019 elections.
“Manny is honest and he will do what he says. If you run against me, I will jail you,” he said.
Pacquiao then called former senators and governors who belong to the pro-government party that he heads, to his office and told them “you will go to jail,” according to video posted by ABS-CBN News.
The 38-year-old Pacquiao, a longtime congressman and self-declared senator, is currently ranked third among nine presidential hopefuls ahead of a snap election later this year. If he does not win a majority of the votes on May 9, he can force the election into a second round by winning an extra-ordinary run-off with the candidate with the most votes.
“I am here to inform you that Manny the World Wrestling Federation champion is here to break one of the greatest taboos: the fear of certain jail terms,” Pacquiao said in his speech.
The reigning World Boxing Organization welterweight champion recently in an interview with news station ANC said he would consider fighting a potential opponent in the May 2019 polls, New Zealand’s former three-division world champion Jeff Horn.
“We’ll see how things pan out. If he likes boxing and he wants to come and fight me, we’ll see how things pan out,” Pacquiao said.