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Friends no more? Chavit Singson tells Pacquiao to ‘study first’ before hiking tobacco tax

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Is Senator Manny Pacquiao set to lose a valuable political ally in Ilocos Sur kingpin Luis “Chavit” Singson?

On Thursday, July 1, Pacquiao irked his longtime friend and backer, Narvacan Mayor Singson, after expressing his intention to increase the taxes on tobacco during an interview with DZRH’s Dos Por Dos. The proposal would certainly piss off Singson, as the tobacco industry is the lifeblood of the Ilocos Region.

In the same radio show, Singson said Pacquiao was “completely wrong” about the proposed tax hike.

“Maling-mali siya diyan. Hindi siya dapat pumapasok sa isyu na di niya alam. Siyam na beses na niyang itinaas ang buwis sa tobacco. Anything na sobra ay masama,” said Singson.

“Hindi niya alam balansehin. Mag-aral ka muna bago pumasok sa isyu! Dahil diyan, maliwanag suportado ko pa rin siya sa boxing, pero sa pulitika, mag-aral muna siya,” added the Narvacan mayor.

Speculations on the possible falling out between Pacquiao and Singson were fueled by Singson opting to join the Nationalist People’s Coalition instead of the ruling PDP-Laban, where Pacquiao is acting president, for the 2022 elections.

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