MANILA - Senatorial candidates running under the Partido Galing at Puso on Tuesday criticized Sarangani Rep. Manny Pacquiao over his statement describing couples in same-sex marriages as worse than animals.
"I think he is misguided. I cannot agree at all, completely disagree," said re-electionist Senator Vicente "Tito" Sotto III.
Lawyer Lorna Kapunan said Pacquiao, a world boxing champion who is also running for senator under the United Nationalist Alliance (UNA), should just focus on his career as a boxer.
"Magaling siya na boksingero. Dun na lang siya," she said.
OFW advocate Susan Ople added that Pacquiao needs more enlightenment and reflection.
Bayan Muna Rep. Neri Colmenares, for his part, described the congressman's comments on homosexuality and same-sex relationships as "below the belt."
In an interview with TV5, Pacquiao said: "Mas mabuti pa yung hayop. Marunong kumilala kung lalaki-lalaki o babae-babae. Kung lalaki sa lalaki o babae sa babae, eh mas masahol pa sa hayop ang tao."
Despite the flak he received, Pacquiao stood by his statement, saying he would "rather obey the Lord's command than obey the desires of the flesh."
"I'm not condemning anyone, but I'm just telling the truth of what the Bible says. The truth from the Bible is what changed me from my old ways," he added.
READ: Pacquiao stands by remarks on same-sex marriage
READ: LGBTs to Pacquiao: Tama na ang kabobohan
SOTTO HOPES NPC TO SUPPORT POE-ESCUDERO
Meanwhile, Sotto, a member of the Nationalist People's Coalition (NPC), said he is still hoping his party will support the tandem of Senators Grace Poe and Francis "Chiz" Escudero.
He said consultations are still ongoing in their party.
"The last thing we would want, ang desisyon ng liderato hindi nakonsulta, biglang sumabog kami," he said.