Manny Pacquiao (R) was the first to congratulate boxing rival Adrien Broner after his victory
Philippine politician Manny Pacquiao says he will jail former allies if he becomes president in May.
The 36-year-old, now a congressman, has so far made no secret of his ambitions.
However, his main rival in the upcoming election, Senator Grace Poe, has condemned the suggestion as “shameful”.
“If I become president, I will punish those who use illegal drugs,” Pacquiao told local broadcaster ABS-CBN.
He added he would also jail those who abused their offices in a way that was “disrespectful to the people”.
Pacquiao has previously said he would prefer to fight Britain’s Amir Khan in the USA in the first half of next year.
But Khan’s promoter Eddie Hearn has said the fighter is far more likely to take on Mexican icon Canelo Alvarez in Las Vegas, with Pacquiao’s promoters contemplating a unification fight.
Pacquiao, who is the only eight-division world champion, won a senate seat in 2015.
The senate is the equivalent of a national parliament in the Philippines.
Senator Grace Poe (C) defeated Pacquiao by a 2-1 margin in the 2016 presidential election
However, Pacquiao, who is president of the country’s senate, says he needs to fulfill his commitment to his supporters.
“Right now I can only focus on my job as a congressman, I have to do that before I can consider running for presidency,” he said.
Pacquiao won a senate seat in 2014 after previously winning a seat in the lower house of Congress.
He won an upset decision against now-retired American superstar Floyd Mayweather in the richest fight in boxing history in 2015, but the Filipino did not cross swords with Mayweather in 2016 after his narrow defeat in the Philippine senate election by another senator, Grace Poe.
Former florist and legal practitioner Poe, 47, has said: “I condemn the disgusting remarks by Manny Pacquiao. Pacquiao should not have mentioned crime, corruption and other political things when he was being interviewed in a national forum. What he did, in my opinion, is very shameful.”
She has also called on her fellow senators to condemn the comments of the “heavyweight champion of the world”.
Should Pacquiao win the presidency, he could become the first president from the LGBT community.