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More relatives of Philippine boxer Pacquiao get into politics

Published on Oct 29, 2013 7:42 PM

GENERAL SANTOS, PHILIPPINES (AFP) - Philippine boxing hero-turned-congressman Manny Pacquiao had three more relatives elected to public office on Tuesday, but a representative for the star downplayed suggestions he was creating his own "political dynasty".

The Commission on Elections said two of the boxing superstar's brothers, along with a sister-in-law, won village council seats in their home city of General Santos in the country's south. Messrs Rogelio and Bobby Pacquiao were elected councillors in separate districts of the city in polls held Monday, while Bobby's wife, Lorelei, won re-election as village chief.

Although villages are the smallest government units, seats are hotly contested and considered the first step in building a crucial grass-roots network for politicians aspiring to higher office. It is common practice among Filipino politicians to have their relatives also run for office to put a "dynasty" in place in the hope of expanding their influence and keeping them in power.

The 34-year-old Mr Pacquiao, who recently expressed hopes of becoming president, has used the fame and riches generated from his boxing to launch a successful political career.

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