By Emmanuel Mongaya
columnist & blogger
For those who have yet to read the story, check out first http://www.abs-cbnnews.com/nation/11/12/11/pacquiao-gov-2013-president-2022 then let’s see how your body reacts.
I know many will say, “Why not?” But something hit me (it was not the Pacman’s left hook) that made me dizzy. I began thinking of Manny, Erap, GMA, even Bongbong.
Sure, I imagine the Pacman won’t be like the bloated yet macho Erap (former president Joseph Estrada) who became the 13th president of the Republic of the Philippines in 1998. Pacquiao will still be fit at 40 in 2022 and maybe with Jinky as the first and only lady.
The Pacman is also different because he is a real boxing hero. Erap, on the other hand, is a reel hero. I could remember only that shadow boxing scene at the Palace grounds as the one real Erap trying to knock out his imagined political enemies.
Manny likewise possessed a genuine rags to riches story while Erap could only claim several stories about being poor on screen.
Nevertheless, if Bob Arum‘s claim about the Pacman’s political plans is correct, his political career would somehow follow Erap’s lead. We know Estrada was mayor for several terms, then congressman and senator, even vice president before becoming president. Pacquiao is likewise a congressman today and would likely win the governorship in 2013. He could thus claim a track record of executive and legislative performance by 2022.
Yet what alarms me are the people around Manny Pacquiao today who are much like the people around Joseph Estrada before and during term as president.
Over a decade ago, I remember jueteng lords around Erap for example. We all know how jueteng made Estrada fail to finish his presidency. Today, people all over the world see somebody many Cebuanos believe to be a masiao lord whenever the Pacman steps on the ring for his exciting fights. I can only imagine who else of similar notoriety are around him especially with his penchant for billiards and cock-fighting derbies.
I just hope I won’t be seeing the former First Gentleman Mike Arroyo at the ringside today when Manny beats Marquez for the third time. FG is supposed to be sick and also taking care of his sick wife Cong. Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo (click the link to see for yourself how sick she is).
But then, it is still to early to be sure of a Manny Pacquiao presidency.
Sen. Bongbong Marcos is expected to claim Malacanang in 2016 though either Vice President Jojo Binay and DOTC Secretary Mar Roxas might frustrate him. If Bongbong succeeds, who knows, he might change the rules through charter change (like what his father, the late dictator, did) and extend his term in office.
While FVR and GMA failed in their respective turns at dancing the cha-cha, Bongbong might succeed and foil the Pacman’s 2022 presidential bid.