MANILA - Boxing icon Rep. Emmanuel Pacquiao (Lone District, Sarangani) is proposing the creation of a Philippine Boxing Commission to provide and implement all necessary welfare incentives and benefits for professional boxers.
Pacquiao, author of House Bill 6409, said the agency’s main objective is to focus on professional boxing and steer the skills and talents of young and promising boxers towards its proper direction.
"Our country has produced world-class boxing legends like the great Gabriel 'Flash' Elorde, and recently the likes of Nonito Donaire Jr., Donnie Nietes, Brian Viloria and the Velasco (Roel and Mansueto) brothers," Pacquiao said.
"Some boxers go into retirement deprived of any kind of financial assistance or access to medical care. Most often, we hear many of our boxing heroes who had brought honor and prestige to our country retire without pension benefits," Pacquiao added.
Pacquiao said the measure seeks to provide for a comprehensive health care benefits, alternative livelihood program, a system of life insurance, reliable death benefits, and other benefits for all boxers who competed and won in international boxing events.
"Boxers risk their lives and limbs to excel in this sport. Some meet their untimely death during fights due to lack of safety and emergency medical services. It is about time that we give due attention and consideration to this sport and especially to our professional boxing champions," Pacquiao said.
Under the bill, all professional boxers shall be enrolled in the National Health Insurance Program (PhilHealth) to enable them to receive and avail of an adequate package of personal health services including, but not limited to, in-patient hospital care, out-patient care, emergency and transfer services, and other supplementary health benefits. The cost of premium contribution and monthly contribution shall be shouldered by the agency.
Likewise, the agency shall establish an alternative livelihood training program and referral system for retired or injured international boxing champions.
The bill also provides for lump sum death benefit of P50,000 to cover funeral services and other expenses of a boxer.
Furthermore, a lifetime retirement pension of P15,000 monthly shall be accorded to professional boxers who won in any world title duly sanctioned by recognized international sporting organizations and bodies.*PNA
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