Manny Pacquiao on Friday filed his certificate of candidacy (COC) for president in the May 9, 2022 elections.
The senator and just-retired world champion boxer left his Forbes Park residence in Makati on a convoy that included a bus adorned with a decal showing his massive picture.
Pacquiao submitted his COC at Sofitel Philippine Plaza in Pasay City, where the Commission on Elections set up a tent to accept certificates filing amid the pandemic.
He is the first presidential aspirant to file a COC. He is tapping former Manila mayor and House Deputy Speaker Lito Atienza as running-mate.
Pacquiao, whose greatness was defined by his boxing-ring exploits, entered the political arena more than a decade ago when he served as a congressman in his home province of Sarangani starting 2010, even while remaining active in professional boxing.
He was re-elected 3 years later before becoming a senator in 2016.
As a boxer, he earned the distinction as the only fighter to win 12 major titles in eight weight classes. He is the first fighter to win the lineal championship in 5 different weight divisions.
In July 2019, Pacquiao became the oldest welterweight champion in history at the age of 40 by beating the erstwhile undefeated Keith Thurman for the WBA (Super) welterweight title.
Pacquiao and his key supporters, including Senator Aquilino "Koko" Pimentel III, are under one wing of of the ruling PDP-Laban. The other wing is led by President Duterte, who is running for vice-president in next year's polls.
Last week, Pacquiao accepted his group's nomination during a national assembly they organized in Quezon City.
Days later, he made an emotional farewell to professional boxing to concentrate on his political campaign.