Those who thought that entering politics and running for a position as high as that of a lawmaker in congress was cut out for boxing great Manny Pacquiao must have been taking hallucinating drugs all these times purchased from their scandalous pork barrel allocation.
The mere mention of pork barrel will immediately ring a bell for there are no other parties involved in pushing Pacquiao to run for representative in congress than some opportunist congressmen themselves.
In fairness to Pacquiao it is not his fault that he is now a congressman representing the province of Sarangani, but one can also blame him for being made a sucker to the covetous and selfish intentions of some of his peers to be able to ride in ease on his popularity and, well, his billions, to be frank about it.
I wonder how Pacquiao’s fair-weather friends are now reacting to a report splashed over the media that, according to official attendance records of House members, the Sarangani congressman showed up for work for four days and was deemed present for three days, bringing his total attendance record to seven days only, out of a total of 70 session days for 2014.
But how can one expect Pacquiao to be diligent and reliable in his job as a lawmaker when he has other concerns to attend to, especially his boxing career, his showbiz commitments, his love for basketball, his new-founded religious obligations, etc?
Pacquiao’s conduct in congress does not really reflect his true vocation and while this may not have an adverse impact on his constituency who have been luckily benefitted by his personal wealth, the tax payers, however, have reason to grumble as their money is being wasted on a nonperformer in congress.
No less than former Senator Rene Saguisag urged House Speaker Feliciano Belmonte Jr. to suspend Pacquiao from the House up to the end of his term in 2016 since the latter appears to treat legislative work “as a hobby or sideline” by virtue of his dismal attendance record.
Some Pacquiao supporters will surely reason that the famed boxer has been bringing honor to the country and he could be forgiven for that.
Well, I have this to say: It is one thing fighting for glory for self and country, but it is another when one commits to work as an elected public servant paid for by the taxpayers.
Had Pacquiao not been swayed and used by some calculating political mercenaries in congress for political expediency at his expense, he could have served the country well by opting to be a sports czar of some kind, as this is where he can help best his countrymen.
The realm of sports is where Manny Pacquiao belongs and his discipline and leadership could have developed, advanced and made the Philippines a country to reckon with in international competitions.
Alas, Pacquiao’s own shortsightedness and popularity-earned narcissistic tendencies have deprived the true glory in sports that the country deserves.