Starpay– a lesson for Pacquiao as witch hunter

‘ARE WE EXPECTING BIGGER PROBLEMS IN POWER SUPPLY?’ Sen. Emmanuel “Manny” Pacquiao poses this question during a hybrid plenary session, Wednesday, June 2, 2021, following the power outages that hit some parts of Luzon Tuesday, June 1, 2021. Pacquiao, in a privilege speech, asks if the country has sufficient supply to prevent further power shortages. Noting that it is the ordinary people, particularly those working and studying from home, who were affected by “brownouts,” he urged the Department of Energy (DOE) to address the problem immediately. “Are we expecting bigger problems pertaining to power supply? Have we done enough preparations for the surge in power supply demand this summer? This is a recurring problem, Mr. President. We cannot rely on the same strategies to solve this problem on the rapidly growing demand for power supply. We need to innovate. We need to secure renewable energy sources,” Pacquiao said. (Joseph Vidal/Senate PRIB)

Isn’t strange that Senator Manny Pacquiao Jr. finger pointed Starpay because it did an excellent job distributing public monies thru the Department of Social Welfare and Development or DSWD? Aside from Starpay, almost all e-wallet service companies took part in the ayuda distribution. Curiously, Pacquiao specifically mentioned Starpay, and not Gcash or Palawan or thereabouts. Is it because Gcash executives are friends with one of partners of the PR group that now services Pacquiao Jr.? Maybe not.

Probably, they assumed that Starpay is just a small startup company ready for the picking. I think Pacquiao’s handlers are looking for a modus vivendi with President Rodrigo Roa Duterte and one of their plans is to look for someone they can blame on the existing corruption charges that Pacquiao himself exposed–belatedly. Easy for the President to blame all to Starpay and demonstrably ask his justice department to investigate and file charges if necessary, and the issue about corruption will now die a natural death. Friends ulit sila, right?

I looked at the firm and found out that the Filipino behind it, Joey Uy, whose relations are so far off from controversial businessman Dennis Uy, was the wonderboy behind the highly successful Pinoy phone maker Starmobile. He made tons of money thru Starmobile and being a marketing guru, made more from penetrating the sari-sari store sector with his mobile load business. Joey wants to empower these sari-sari store owners with new technologies and one way of doing that is provide them with an accounting system for free thru his SIM loading system. This was the very same system Joey Uy managed that made the ayuda distribution highly efficient and effective.

Joey Uy is a visionary. He wants to uplift the lives of the small and medium-sized entrepreneurs just like Senator Pacquiao who admitted that his heart is with the poor Filipinos.

Lemme me fair in saying that connecting Joey with Dennis Uy did not come from Pacquiao. It was my good old friend Mon Tulfo writing for the Manila Times who made the error connecting Joey with Dennis Uy. Obviously, Tulfo did not check his data before releasing it to the public.

I just remembered what Narvacan mayor Chavit Singson said in his Dos for Dos interview recently– he likes and supports the Senator as a boxer but not as a politician. ” Mag-aral muna siya (Let him study first),” says Chavit, an indirect hit on Manny’s intellectual capabilities. Twice asked by Anthony Taberna, Chavit says that he continues to support Manny’s boxing career but politics? Nah. By the way, Chavit is in relations with the sister of the wife of Manny Pacquiao Jr., making them “in-laws.”

This Starpay brouhaha is probably just one out of the many “misses” the good senator is expected to do once he comes back after his fight with Errol Spence. The thing is, the good senator is now forced to good with his promise of eradicating corruption from the bureaucracy—a promise that is so hard to keep especially as a political platform. As what other political personalities are saying— study first, and talk later.


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