Manny Pacquiao begs Indonesia president to spare life of drug smuggler Mary Jane Veloso about to be executed

'It will be a great morale booster if, in my own little way, I can save a life'

Manny Pacquiao has sent a heartfelt statement to the president of Indonesia “begging” for the life of Mary Jane Veloso to be saved.

The Filipino boxing champion is calling on Joko Widodo to save the Filipina from death row before his big fight with Floyd Mayweather on Saturday.

Veloso, due to be killed by firing squad this week, is one of the so-called Bali Nine. She was condemned to die by the Indonesian government after being convicted of trafficking 2.6kg of heroin in 2010, but many believe the 30-year-old is an innocent migrant worker who was duped by human traffickers.

“His Excellency, President Joko Widodo, I am Manny Pacquiao. On behalf of my countrman, Mary Jane Veloso, and the entire Filipino people, I am begging and knocking on your kind heart that Your Excellency will grant executive clemency to her by sparing her life and saving her life from execution,” Pacquiao wrote.

“Mr President, on 2 May I’ll be fighting in Las Vegas, Nevada, against Floyd Mayweather. It is considered the fight of the century. It will be a great morale booster if, in my own little way, I can save a life. I am dedicating this fight to my country and the entire Asian people, to which the Phillipines and Indonesia belong. Thank you, Mr President.”

Pacquiao, a devout Christian and political representative of the Saragani province, is also calling on Filipinos to pray for Veloso.

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Migrante International stages a prayer vigil rally to save Mary Jane Veloso

President of the Phillipines Benigno Aquino III spoke to Widodo over the weekend at the Association of Southeast Asian Nations Summit in Malaysia in a last-ditch attempt to win clemency for Veloso.

Widodo is said to be “sympathetic and consulting with the Indonestian Attorney General on the legal issues”, after previously rejected an appeal on the grounds that Phillipines should respect Indonesian laws.

Veloso’s lawyers are awaiting a response from the Sleman district court in Yogyakarta.

It is believed the condemned men and women are to be killed after the stroke of midnight on Wednesday morning, after photos emerged overnight showing a local mortican incscribing their names onto crosses. Veloso’s name is among them with the date 29.04.15, according to news.com.au.

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