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Gatchalian willing to set aside politics just to support Pacquiao vs Bradley

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Even just for one day, Nationalist People’s Coalition (NPC) senatorial bet Win Gatchalian is willing to set aside politics as he urged his fellow candidates to support Filipino boxing icon Emmanuel “Manny” Pacquiao in his third fight versus American Timothy Bradley Jr. this coming April 9 (April 10 Manila time).

“This is the time to put politics in the back burner and unite behind our fellow Filipino and international boxing champion Manny Pacquiao in his third fight against American boxing champion Timothy Bradley,” said Gatchalian, an exclusive senatorial bet for Partido Galing at Puso (PGP) under presidential frontrunner Grace Poe and leading presidential bet Chiz Escudero.

Gatchalian, however, maintained that he still believes that Pacquiao will be having an undue advantage against other senatorial candidates who are still in the stage of raising their awareness and conversion level among voters.

“Let’s face it, Manny Pacquiao will definitely score points among the electorate because of the live telecast of his fight with Bradley. His conversion factor or those voting for him will surely increase especially if he wins this third fight with the American champion,” explained Gatchalian.

Gatchalian agrees with former Comelec Chair Sixto Brillantes who had earlier advised Pacquiao to postpone the April 9boxing match, saying it gives him more exposure as a candidate that is not allowed among national celebrities.

“(S)uch coverage would surely provide him an enormous advantage over all other candidates. Difficult would be to deny that it was not deliberate.The reason being it provides added propaganda advertisement to one’s candidacy besides earning financially from such product endorsement,” said Brilliantes.

Gatchalian and Pacquiao are incumbent members of the House of Representatives and are both running for senators under opposite camps. Pacquiao is in the ticket of the United Nationalist Alliance (UNA) of Vice President Jejomar Binay.

Gatchalian’s call for unity and support for Pacquiao’s April 9 fight came in the heels of the Commission on Elections (Comelec) opinion that the congressman from Sarangani will not be violating the Omnibus Election Code since the live coverage of his fight will be about his career as a professional boxer and not about his senatorial campaign.

Former Akbayan Partylist Rep. Walden Bello, who is also running for senator, had earlier filed a disqualification complaint before the Comelec arguing that Pacquiao’s April 9 fight will give him undue advantage in terms of live media coverage and will be unfair to other senatorial bets like himself. (R. Burgos)