PACQUIAO GETS 20 GUN BAN EXEMPTIONS TO PROTECT SELF AND FAMILY
MANILA, JANUARY 24, 2007 (STAR) By Mayen Jaymalin - An iron fist is not enough.
The Commission on Elections (Comelec) has granted not just one but 20 gun ban exemptions to boxing champion Manny "Pacman" Pacquiao, who the poll body said needs appropriate protection at this time.
Comelec Commissioner Nicodemo Ferrer said that because of the millions he earned during his recent fights, Pacquiao would definitely need guns to protect himself and his family.
"You can read in the newspapers how much Pacquiao is worth," Ferrer said, adding that being a high-profile personality residing in a troubled area is enough reason for the Comelec to approve all his applications for a gun ban exemption.
Last Friday, Pacquiao went to the Comelec main office in Intramuros to express his support for the poll body and personally file an application for exemption.
Aside from Pacquiao, there are also some known personalities who also sought exemptions from the gun ban but Ferrer declined to identify them for security reasons. About 1,000 politicians have applied for exemption, Ferrer added.
Ferrer also reported that as of yesterday, the Comelec has recorded some 17,000 applications for gun ban exemptions. Less than half or 6,000 of the figure were approved and about 1,000 were denied.
"Majority of the 6,000 approved applications were those of police and military personnel," Ferrer said.
Meanwhile, in General Santos City, Pacquiao fans are very excited to if he would really run for a local post in his hometown this coming elections.
Speculations were rife after the boxing the champ met the other night some political bigwigs in the city who will be his allies in the fight against incumbent City Mayor Pedro Acharon Jr., a party mate of South Cotabato Rep. Darlene Antonino of the Achievers Integrity Movement (AIM), one of the members in Congress who voted for the impeachment of President Arroyo.
"He is 95 percent definite about joining politics and it will be known this week either he will run for mayor or congressman," lawyer Franklin "Jeng" Gacal told The STAR.
If Pacquiao decides to run for mayor, he will also be up against first-termer City Councilor Shirlyn Banas-Nograles, who just abandoned AIM and declared she will be aspiring for the mayoralty post, aside from Acharon who will seek re-election for his last term.
When asked about the possibility of facing Pacquiao, Mayor Acharon said, "I can do nothing if he will be persuaded by other interest groups." – with John Paul Jubelag
Chief News Editor: Sol Jose Vanzi
© Copyright, 2007
by PHILIPPINE HEADLINE NEWS ONLINE
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