Pacquiao won’t, can’t run for senator

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The boxer cannot join the senatorial race because he is underage.

MANILA, Philippines – A day after Vice President Jejomar Binay welcomed world champion boxer and Sarangani congressman Manny Pacquiao to join the senatorial ticket of the United Nationalist Alliance (UNA), Pacquiao, through a staff member, told Rappler he is not running for senator.

Rose Tamayo, Pacquiao’s public information officer, said the boxer was “very honored” by the Vice President’s statement since he is a man Pacquiao respects. But the 8-division world champion is not eligible to run.

“It’s not the right time for him to run for the Senate because he’s only 33 years old,” said Tamayo over the phone. “The age limit is 35.” The senatorial race will be in May 2013.

Pacquiao will, however, run for governor of Saranggani as previously announced, according to Tamayo.

She also said that when Pacquiao is of the right age, “perhaps” he will consider running for the Senate.

On Tuesday, April 10, during a visit to Isulan, Sultan Kudarat, Binay said that his coalition has discussed the possibility of having Pacquiao as a senatorial bet.

Pacquiao is currently training for his bout against American Timothy Bradley in June. The Filipino fighter has repeatedly expressed his desire to retire from the sport “soon” to focus on politics. –

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