Rep. Manny Pacquiao, the Fighter of the Decade, deeply regrets he cannot visit the areas devastated by super typhoon Yolanda because he is deep in training for his crucial battle for the World Boxing Organization International welterweight title fight against Brandon Rios in Macau on Nov. 24 .
In a texted message to this reporter, Pacquiao said: “I really feel very bad over what happened in the Visayas region, where more than 10,000 people are believed to have lost their lives. I really want to visit the area and personally do what I can to help our countrymen, who have suffered so much in this terrible tragedy, but I’m in deep training in General Santos City for a crucial fight so I regret I cannot go. “
However, Pacquiao said he will send help to those who need it the most. “I enjoin all of you to pray for our country and people in these trying times.”
Pacquiao is scheduled to fly to Macau on Monday. His opponent Rios, trainer Robert Garcia and strength and conditioning coach Alex Ariza left Los Angeles for Macau earlier Tuesday (Manila time).
Meanwhile, Top Rank promoter Bob Arum has announced that he and his company will donate P1 million for the rehabilitation of areas devastated by the super typhoon.
In an interview with Peter Musgni of ABS-CBN in Corpus Christi, Texas, Arum compared the come-from-behind ninth-round technical knockout victory of Nonito Donaire over Vic Darchinyan in their much-awaited rematch last Saturday with the resiliency of the Filipino people.