Press Release
April 23, 2013

Senator Koko renews call for boxing commission

Coming in the heels of consecutive defeats suffered by the country's three most prominent boxers, Senator Aquilino "Koko" Pimentel III, PDP Laban President, today renewed his call for the creation of a Philippine Boxing Commission.

Senator Pimentel explained that considering the growing popularity of boxing and the number of world class champions the country has produced, "we must give due consideration to this sport and to all our professional boxers--we need an agency that would focus and steer the skills and talents of the youth towards proper direction; provide and implement the necessary safety standards in every boxing match; and provide and implement all necessary welfare incentives and benefits long overdue to professional boxers who have brought honor and prestige to our country."

For this reason, the re-electionist senator vowed to reintroduce Senate Bill No. 3254 or "An Act Creating the Philippine Boxing Commission Thereby Strengthening the Country's Standing in Boxing Sports, Ensuring the Welfare of Filipino Boxers and Providing Funds Therefor" if he gets another chance as a legislator.

Pimentel sits as Chairman of the Senate Committee on Games and Amusement.

He lamented the succession of defeats suffered by "our Filipino boxing heroes Manny Pacquiao, Nonito Donaire, Jr., and Brian Viloria." "Parang na-triple whammy tayo!" He added that it is important to promote the welfare of the country's professional boxers.

"The bill that I filed seeks to require promoters to provide private insurance coverage for each professional boxing promotion; provide for health care benefits through PhilHealth and death benefits for all professional boxers; and provide for alternative livelihood programs for retired and/or injured international boxing champions, among other benefits enumerated in the legislation," Pimentel explained in a statement.

It will be recalled that in December 2012, Pacquiao suffered a stunning knockout defeat in the hands of Juan Manuel Marquez. Then last week, Brian Viloria lost his flyweight titles to Mexico's Juan Francisco Estrada. And Nonito Donaire lost his superbantamweight championship to Cuba's Guillermo Rigondeaux.

"I am sure our boxing champs will come back and regain their glory," Pimentel said, "but they have already given the sport, and our country so much that we need to repay their heroism by making sure they have a future even after boxing."

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