Thursday, August 12, 2010

No training inside Batasan for Pacquiao - Belmonte

House Speaker Feliciano Belmonte Jr. has thumbed down the plan of seven division world boxing champion and Sarangani Rep. Manny Pacquiao to train for his upcoming fight inside the Batasan Pambansa Complex.

“No, it’s not a good idea. Sports should be sports.Wag nating ipino-politicizeyung sports (Let us not politicize sports)," Belmonte said at a press briefing Thursday.

Belmonte said he is discouraging Pacquiao to hold his training inside the compound as it would draw a lot of kibitzers. “This (Batasan complex) is a political place and people will be coming over to watch him. I don’t think it’s a good idea," he said.

Pacquiao earlier said he might sleep in his office so he can train for his fight against Mexico’s Antonio Margarito and perform his duties as a lawmaker, including attending early committee hearings.

Pacquiao’s bout with Margarito is set on Nov. 13 in a yet to be announced venue.

Jogging OK, but...

Belmonte, however, said Pacquiao can jog at the House grounds but not on a daily basis.

“I don’t like the grounds of the House to be the focus of some professional fight like that. If he’s going to do it once or twice here purely so we can see him and so forth, that’s OK. But that’s about it," he said.

He added the House may not have the necessary facilities for Pacquiao’s training.

“It’s unfair to him. This is a big fight. It is not just his name at stake here, it’s everybody of us hoping for his victory. Hindi pwede yung parang pinagsasama niya yung trabaho(He can’t mix both jobs)," he said.

100% support

Still, Belmonte said the chamber is supporting Pacquiao 100 percent.

“I would like to say that we are 100 percent supportive of Congressman Pacquiao and I myself know that he intends to be a real hardworking congressman. He wants to make a difference in the province of Sarangani if not to the country," he said.

The former Quezon City mayor also said he is impressed with Pacquiao’s performance so far as a lawmaker. “He’s well informed and doing his best. In fact, I praised his first speech which I thought is a very well crafted speech."

He was referring to Pacquiao's privilege speechlast July 27 highlighting his plans for Sarangani province.

Excused from session

Belmonte said that although he's not a boxing fan, he intends to watch the Pacquiao-Margarito fight to give moral support to his colleague. He added Pacquiao will be excused from the session once his training begins.

“It doesn’t matter if he’s late or absent for a couple of days. Sabihin niya (He can tell us) he’s doing a patriotic duty," he said.

He added the other members of the House can watch Pacquiao’s fight as its date falls on a recess. “The period of recess will start a few days before his fight. I’d like to be as supportive of him as possible but without sacrificing the work here."

Credits: — KBK/RSJ, GMANews.TV

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