BOXING icon and senator Emmanuel “Manny” Pacquiao, in a visit to Cebu on Thursday, Oct. 28, 2021 reminded Cebuanos about the horrors of Martial Law in an apparent dig at Presidential candidate Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos Jr. and the latter’s efforts to downplay what is believed to be some of Philippine history’s darkest years.
Pacquiao, who is running for President under the PDP-Laban party (Pimentel wing), laid a wreath at the commemorative marker of Redemptorist priest Fr. Rudy Romano in Barangay Tisa, Cebu City.
Romano, a human rights advocate and a leader of the anti-Marcos movement in Cebu, was abducted on July 11, 1985 by elements of the Military Intelligence Group (MIG) in broad daylight while traversing a busy road in Tisa on board his motorcycle. He was never seen again.
“Hindi natin pwede kalimutan ang mga pangyayari. Kumbaga sa sugat, may marka yan. Kahit gumaling ang sugat, may marka pa rin yan (We should not forget what happened. Like a wound, it will leave a scar. Even if it heals, there will still be a mark),” Pacquiao said.
Pacquiao was accompanied by members of the Manny Pacquiao for President Movement including Tisa Barangay Captain Ringo Pacaña and former Cebu Provincial Board Member Ribomapil Holganza Jr., himself a political prisoner for three years during Martial Law.
“Huwag nating kalimutan pahalagahan ang karapatan ng bawat isa. Nothing personal pero yong karaptan ng tao ang pinaglalaban natin dito (Let us not forget to value the rights of every person. This is nothing personal, but we are fighting for human rights),” Pacquiao added.
Pacquiao arrived in Cebu to attend the birthday celebration of a friend.
His visit came a week after Marcos Jr. arrived here for a series of political meetings.
Pacquiao’s running mate in the 2022 polls is former Manila City mayor Lito Atienza.