[Editor’s note: we’re always looking for reporters to give account of the news with a local flavor.  Longtime reader Poch comes to us from the Philippines and gives his thoughts on the recent victory by Manny Pacquiao.  Check out Poch’s web site, Plato Press.]

When my great fellow countryman Manny ‘PacMan’ Pacquiao started dipping his toes in politics, I somewhat lost faith in him thinking he’s a fool. I should know – I risked my life during the EDSA Uprising in 1986 and after all, corruption still reigned.

Then comes this Pacquiao-Margarito fight when PacMan was already an elected congressman after some election failures. When I heard after the bout that his opponent Margarito was 17 pounds heavier, I thought with awe “What more miracle would this man do?”  (When PacMan was the same bantamweight with me, I imagined and itched of fighting with him)

And so now the House of Representatives is preparing a hero’s party for him. “We’ll prepare as best as we can”, the Speaker of the House said.

What PacMan’s fellow citizens are saying (quotes are from the Philippine Daily Inquirer – most were translated from the local language):

  • “He becomes a symbol of hope, that one could work hard and be successful”, a kitchen helper said.
  • Many are wondering why Pacquiao didn’t knock down Margarito when it seemed easy for PacMan to. “Manny is truly a gentleman”, a female accountant commented. “In the 11th and 12th rounds, he could have knocked out Margarito but he didn’t to avoid making worse the latter’s condition.”
  • I pity Margarito“, a public jeepney driver said. “He tore off PacMan’s photo in a magazine during Solar’s prefight interview… Now it was Margarito’s turn to be torn.”
  • The most overheard comment about Margarito’s arrogance: “Serves him right for being so cocksure.”

I still think politics would ruin our dear PacMan and hope that it wouldn’t be so.

[Editor’s note: Check out more PacMan coverage on the Inquirer’s web site – there’s a special section for him.]