MANILA, Philippines – Legislators rallied behind their colleague, Sarangani Representative Manny Pacquiao, assuring him that he was still the “people’s champ” following his surprising defeat against Mexican Juan Manuel Marquez on Sunday (Manila time) in Las Vegas.
In statements sent to reporters, Speaker Feliciano Belmonte Jr. and Albay Representative Edcel Lagman said that they were confident that Pacquiao would be able to get back on his feet as “he has always been the symbol of Filipino resiliency”.
“He is still the people’s champ and just as he has always been the symbol of Filipino resiliency, I am certain he can rise above this setback and still inspire our own people,” said Belmonte who pointed out that one defeat would not be able to destroy all the achievements Pacquiao has dedicated to the country.
This was echoed by Lagman who said that one defeat “cannot obliterate the illustrious boxing career of Manny Pacquiao.”
“He truly deserves the continuing adulation of Filipinos and the boxing world, and he is entitled to a fifth bout with Marquez,” added the Albay lawmaker.
Manila Representative Amado Bagatsing, chairman of the House committee on games and amusement, also called for a rematch saying that Marquez’s win was only brought about by a “lucky punch.”