Manila: Boxing star Manny Pacquiao has created a firestorm in his home country after saying people in same-sex relationships "are worse than animals."
Pacquiao, who is running for a Philippine Senate seat, made the remark in a video posted Monday on local TV5's election site. He also said animals are better than people in same-sex relationships because they recognize the difference between males and females.
Among those expressing opposition to the comments was gay comedian and television host Jose Marie Viceral, known as Vice Ganda. He tweeted that lesbian, gays, bisexuals and transgenders are humans, not animals. He said they're not saints, but that they'll pray for Pacquiao.
Danton Remoto of the LGBT group Ladlad said Pacquiao's comments showed he had a shallow understanding of issues important to the LGBT community.
However, the boxer realised his mistake and later apologised.
I'm sorry for hurting people by comparing homosexuals to animals. Please forgive me for those I've hurt. God Bless! pic.twitter.com/bqjRcWqp8R— Manny Pacquiao (@mannypacquiao) February 16, 2016