Sportswear giants Nike have terminated their contract with boxing superstar Manny Pacquiao after his abrasive remarks on homosexuals.
Pacquiao recently sparked a furore when he described gay couples as “worse than animals” in a television interview.
The American company said in a statement: “We find Manny Pacquiao’s comments abhorrent.
“Nike strongly opposes discrimination of any kind and has a long history of supporting and standing up for the rights of the LGBT community.
“We no longer have a relationship with Manny Pacquiao.”
Pacquiao, 36, has begun preparations for life outside the ring as he is gunning for a seat in the senate in the country’s May elections.
When asked about his views on gay marriage, outlawed in the Catholic-dominated Philippines, the Pac-Man shocked the world with his views.
“It’s common sense. Do you see animals that go male to male or female to female? So the animals are even better,” Pacquiao told local broadcaster TV5.
“Because they know how to distinguish from male to male or female to female. Right? Now if we allow male to male or female to female, then that makes us worse than animals.”
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
Amid strong backlash from gay rights group, he swiftly apologised, tweeting: “I’m sorry for hurting people by comparing homosexuals to animals. Please forgive me for those I’ve hurt. God Bless!”