Senator Manny Pacquiao on Wednesday refuted the statement of President Rodrigo Duterte against him after the latter slammed his statement concerning his stance on China’s aggression on the country’s territorial waters.
In an interview with Pastor Apollo Quiboloy aired on Tuesday evening, a visibly irritated Duterte tells his fellow PDP-Laban party mate to study foreign policy better before making related remarks.
“It’s about foreign policy. I would not want to degrade him, but next time he should…mag-aral ka muna nang husto bago ka gumawa ng statement,” the President said.
And while Pacquiao respects Duterte’s opinion, in a statement, he “humbly disagrees” with the President’s “assessment of my understanding of foreign policy.”
“I respect the President’s opinion but humbly disagree with his assessment of my understanding of foreign policy. I am a Filipino voicing out what needs to be said in defense of what has been adjudicated as rightfully ours,” the senator said.
Pacquiao said the Chief Executive, who repeatedly maintained his friendship with China, was ‘misinformed’ regarding his statement over the WPS.
“I firmly believe that my statement reflects the sentiment of majority of the Filipinos, that we should stand strong in protecting our sovereign rights while pursuing a peaceful and diplomatic solution to the dispute,” he continued.
Pacquiao previously criticized Duterte’s stance on the maritime dispute with China, calling it ‘lacking.’
“Sa akin, nakukulangan ako. Nakukulangan ako kumpara doon sa bago pa siya tumakbo, nag-e-eleksyon pa lang. Dapat ipatuloy niya yun para magkaroon din naman tayo ng respeto,” the senator said.
In the same interview, Duterte lashed out at Pacquiao saying he had a “very shallow knowledge” about his administration’s policy on the territorial waters.