Boxing star Manny Pacquiao said on Sunday he will run for President of the Philippines next year, after railing against corruption in government and what he calls President Rodrigo Duterte’s cozy relationship with China.
Mr. Pacquiao accepted the nomination of his political allies during the national assembly of the faction he leads in the ruling PDP-Laban Party, days after a rival faction nominated Mr. Duterte’s long-time aide, Senator Christopher “Bong” Go, as its presidential candidate.
That faction nominated Mr. Duterte for Vice-President, a move that critics called a cynical ploy by Mr. Duterte to retain power.
“I am a fighter, and I will always be a fighter inside and outside the ring,” Mr. Pacquiao, 42, a Senator, said in a live-streamed speech during the Assembly. “I am accepting your nomination as candidate for President.”
Mr. Duterte is prohibited by the Constitution from running for a second six-year term as President.