A new poll shows that Filipino boxing icon Emmanuel “Manny” D. Pacquiao has a fighting chance to become the next President of the Philippines.
Results of an independent and non-commissioned survey indicate that Pacquiao, currently a Senator, is one of top three choices for president.
Pacquiao is also in the top three among choices for vice president.
Likewise, the survey by the OCTA Research Team reveals that Pacquiao is the number one choice among voters if he seeks another term as senator.
The OCTA results were released on Monday (February 22) amid growing interest on who will succeed President Rodrigo Duterte.
It can be recalled that the Philippine Asian News Today reported about the visit last year to Vancouver by Pacquiao and his family.
Pacquiao and his loved ones were billeted at the Trump International Hotel & Tower Vancouver.
On January 7, 2020, Pacquiao had dinner with Philippine Consul General to Vancouver, Maria Andrelita S. Austria, and her staff; personal friend and B.C. lawyer Giovanni Mata; and former Olympic boxer and now Vancouver publisher Rey Fortaleza of the ReyFort Media Group, mother company of Philippine Asian News Today.
Pacquiao and family travelled to Vancouver from the province of Alberta, where Pacquiao had a basketball exhibition.
He turned 40 on December 2018, making him eligible to run for President of the Philippines in 2022.
One has to be 40 to be president of the Philippines.
Pacquiao won a seat in the Senate in May 2016. He had previously served in the House of Representatives.
The Filipino slugger garnered more than 16 million votes, landing seventh among 12 new members of the Senate, a traditional springboard to the presidency.
The OCTA survey showed that Duterte’s daughter and Davao City Mayor Sara “Inday” Duterte-Carpio has emerged as the top choice for prospective presidency in the upcoming 2022 elections.
The Tugon ng Masa national survey was conducted last January 26 to February 1, 2021 with 1,200 respondents.
The respondents were asked to choose one name from a list of 16 potential candidates.
The OCTA survey found 22 percent of the respondents supporting a probable presidential bid of Duterte.
Other probable candidates supported by the respondents were Senator Grace Poe (13 percent), Pacquiao (12 percent), former Senator Ferdinand Marcos Jr. (12 percent), Manila Mayor Francisco “Isko” Moreno Domagoso (11 percent ), Senator Bong Go (6 percent), Vice President Leni Robredo (5 percent), Senate President Vicente Sotto III (3 percent), Taguig-Pateros Rep. Alan Peter Cayetano (3 percent), former DILG Secretary Mar Roxas (2 percent), Senator Cynthia Villar (2 percent), Senator Panfilo Lacson (2 percent), Senator Juan Edgardo Angara (1 percent), President Rodrigo Duterte (1 percent), Sorsogon Gov. Francis Escudero (1 percent), and Senator Richard Gordon (1 percent).
Meanwhile, 4 percent of the respondents still did not know whom they will elect/ refused to identify candidates/were not voting for any candidate in the 2022 presidential elections.
In the same survey, Duterte-Carpio, Domagoso, and Pacquiao emerged as “statistically tied” frontrunners for the post of Vice President.
“If the May 2022 elections for Vice President was held during the survey period, 14 percent of the respondents support a probable bid of Davao City Mayor Sara Duterte as Vice President,” OCTA said.
Statistically tied with Mayor Duterte in a probable bid for Vice President are Domagoso and Pacquiao, who each received 11 percent of support from respondents for their probable vice-presidential bids in the 2022 elections.
Moreover, statistically tied with Domagoso and Pacquiao were Poe (10 percent) and Alan Peter Cayetano (8 percent).
OCTA noted that the statistically tied probabilities were indicative of a tight race for the position of Vice President in the 2022 elections.
The respondents also supported the probable vice presidential bid of Sotto (7 percent), Marcos (6 percent), Go (6 percent), Escudero (5 percent), Robredo (5 percent), Villar (4 percent), Lacson (3 percent), Roxas (3 percent), Senator Pia Cayetano (2 percent), Angara (1 percent), and Gordon (1 percent).
A few respondents (5 percent) still do not know whom to vote/ refuse to identify a candidate/ are not going to vote in the vice presidential elections.
OCTA is the same group that tracks the country’s COVID-19 cases.
Among prospective senatorial candidates, Pacquiao had a high preference rate in all regions and socioeconomic classes.
Among President Duterte’s Cabinet members, only Public Works and Highways Secretary Mark Villar had a statistical chance of making it to the top 12, followed by Palace spokesman Harry Roque Jr., Health Secretary Francisco Duque 3rd, Communications Secretary Martin Andanar, Cabinet Secretary Karlo Alexei Nograles, Interior Secretary Eduardo Año, Labor Secretary Silvestre Bello 3rd, Chief Presidential Legal Counsel Salvador Panelo, Transportation Secretary Arthur Tugade and Tourism Secretary Bernadette Romulo-Puyat, who are all outside the magic 12.
President Duterte maintained that his daughter Sara Duterte-Carpio is not running for president.
In his remarks during his visit to Surigao del Sur, Duterte reiterated that he had told his daughter not to run for national office as long as there were politicians, like former senator Antonio Trillanes 4th.
“Inday Sara is not running. I have really really put my foot down, naaawa ako sa anak ko. Ang pulitika rito kababuyan. Lalo na kung sasali si Trillanes. Pati yung anak kong 16 years old, ginawa pa tong druglord,” Duterte said, referring to his daughter Veronica Duterte.
“Ito si Trillanes, be careful of Trillanes, magbantay kayo. He will sell you to the devil. ‘Pag yan ang nakaupo, patay. Ako sabi ko sa mga Pilipino… walanghiya ‘yan, totoo,” he added.
The President made the statement after his daughter emerged as the top choice for both president and vice president in the 2022 elections based on an independent survey released on Monday.