Pacquiao asks Indonesia to spare Veloso’s life
Filipino boxing champion and legislator Manny Pacquiao issued a statement on Monday pleading with Indonesian President Joko Widodo to grant executive clemency to Filipino human trafficking victim Mary Jane Veloso.
In the statement he read on live television, Pacquiao said that it would be a “morale booster” for him in his upcoming fight against American boxer Floyd Mayweather Jr. if he could save Veloso’s life.
He also said that his May 2 fight against Mayweather would be dedicated to all Asian people, including Indonesians.
This is Pacquiao’s statement in full:
“His Excellency, President Joko Widodo, I am Manny Pacquiao. On behalf of my countryman, Mary Jane Veloso and all of the the Filipino people, I am begging and knocking on your kind heart that your excellency will grant executive clemency to her by sparing her life and saving her life from execution.”
“Mr. President, on May 2, I will be fighting in Las Vegas, Nevada against (Floyd) Mayweather which is considered the fight of the century. It will be a great morale booster if in my own little way, I can save a life.”
“I am dedicating this fight to my country and the entire Asian people to which the Philippines and Indonesia belong. Thank you very much.”
Pacquiao gave the statement after Veloso’s mother, Celia, urged the Filipino boxing champion to help in the cause to save her daughter’s life.
“Kung nanonood man o nagbabasa ng diyaryo o nakikinig ng radyo si Manny Pacquiao, sana Manny, tulungan mo ‘yung anak ko,” (If Manny Pacquiao is watching television or reading the newspaper or listening to the radio, please help my daughter) Celia said in a radio interview.
“Magsalita ka naman kahit konti lang alang-alang sa dalawa niyang anak. Nakikiusap ako sa’yo. Konting salita lang baka sakali (If you could speak in behalf of her two sons, I’m begging you, maybe a few words would help),” she added.
Celia said that a plea from Pacquiao might help because he was being hailed globally as a boxing champion.
The 30-year-old mother of two is set to be executed through a firing squad on April 28 according to her relatives. AJH/CB
Aquino to meet Widodo, appeal Veloso case
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