Who is the richest politician in the Philippines? The richest among the Filipino politicians in the country isn’t an easy task to determine considering the limited sources of information we can found on the Internet, in the news, or in the government kept documents such as the Statements of Assets, Liabilities and Net Worth (SALN) by all the known politicians in our nation. Furthermore, the Philippine politics has been known for having problems when it comes to honesty and transparency for so many years and decades. Nevertheless, there is always fame when there is fortune. Thus, we have recognized the contenders or the probable persons who might be considered as the wealthiest politicians in the country.
Manny Pacquiao, the richest congressman
We start with the Filipino boxing icon, fighter of the decade, and Representative of Sarangani Manny Pacquiao. According to Atty. Ricardo Bering of the congressional records management service of the Philippine House of Representatives, Pacquiao declared a net worth of P1.134 billion in the Statement of Assets, Liabilities and Net Worth he filed at the records management service as of December 31, 2010. This made him the richest lawmaker and the only billionaire in the congress. In 2009, Cynthia Villar (wife of senator Manuel Villar), the richest in the congress last year, reported a net worth of 947.883 million pesos. Her Las Piñas seat is now held by son Mark Villar who reported a net worth of P156.19 million as of December 31, 2010.
ESPN ‘s The Magazine, in its May 2011 “all about the money” issue, reported Manny Pacquiao, along with Alex Rodriguez, an American Major League Baseball third baseman for the New York Yankees, as the highest-paid athletes in 2010-2011. Manny Pacquiao, has an estimated earnings of $32 million (roughly 1.4 billion in Philippine pesos) from his purse in two fights with Joshua Clottey and Antonio Margarito in 2010. These earnings still exclude endorsements, appearance fees, sponsorship money and other sources of extra income. It still doesn’t include the money he earned from his fight with Shane Mosley in May 2011.
Manny Villar, the richest in the senate
Senator Manuel “Manny” Villar is still the richest in the house of senate despite of the costs he incurred in his presidential bid in the 2010 presidential elections, which was won by Benigno Aquino III. Senator Villar, a real-estate mogul, has a net worth of P725.2 million, according to his Statement of Assets, Liabilities and Net Worth in 2010. This declarations made Representative Manny Pacquiao (who declared more than a billion pesos) richer than him, if we will based on the 2010 SALN of the two politicians. However, in the Forbes 2011 list of the Philippines’ 40 richest, Villar was ranked no. 17 as the richest Filipino in the country, with a net worth of $620 million or P26.95 billion (43.47 exchange rate). After losing from his 2010 presidential bid, the senator is now focusing on running his property businesses, that is, Vista Land & Lifescapes and Polar Property Holdings.
Who’s the richest politician?
From the discussions we have tackled above, it seems that Senator Manny Villar is the wealthiest person who holds a decision-making position in the government. He is also the 17th richest person in the Philippines. Representative and boxing icon Manny Pacquiao is not even included in the top 40 wealthiest Filipinos in the country for 2011. Speaking of the richest people in the Philippines, we should not also forget the 8th richest person in the country, Eduardo Cojuangco Jr., who has a net worth of $1.4 billion or P60.86 billion (43.47 exchange rate) according to Forbes. The chairman of San Miguel Corporation, the largest food and beverage corporation in the Philippines and Southeast Asia, is also a former governor of Tarlac (1967-1969 ) and a representative of Tarlac’s First District (December 30, 1969 – September 23, 1972). He was also a presidential candidate in the 1992 Philippine presidential election, which was won by former president Fidel V. Ramos. Mr. Cojuangco is currently the chairman emeritus of the Nationalist People’s Coalition.
Source: Forbes.com, Wikipedia.com, ESPN.com, npcparty.org