The Senatoriables: The Opposition And The Administration Candidates

The Senatoriables: The Opposition And The Administration Candidates

The campaign season for the midterm election this May 2019 is in full swing. By now, many may already have their own bets for the senatorial slots. However, even the most politically inclined Filipino doesn’t always get to complete their lineup until the last minute of the election season. With how fragile political opinions can easily be swayed and how a single stance on certain social matters can weigh heavily on a candidate’s scorecard for different people, choosing a deserving candidate is not as easy as it seems and will be a different experience for different people.

There is a total of 62 senatorial candidates vying for a seat in the Senate this year. With only 12 seats to be filled in this election, choosing doesn’t get any easier.  Who among them can sing? Who is aligned with your religious values? Who’s against Federalism? Who isn’t?

To make that decision a little less uninformed, here’s a low down of the opposition and administration bets this upcoming senatorial election.

 

Administration candidates

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With a name that even brandishes the current administration’s battle cry “Change is Coming”, this is what the administration bets promise to continue once they get elected. Hugpong ng Pagbabago (Faction for Change) was formed to pursue the ideals of a strong region, secure life of their constituents, good governance, and effective leadership of their party members.

Raffy Alunan

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His government portfolio goes all the way back to the early 80s. In 2016, he lost the senatorial campaign with less than 2 million votes. This upcoming election, with a strong endorsement from the President, coupled with his vast experience serving the government, he is hoping to secure a seat in the Senate.

For your information

Age: 67

Residence: Quezon City

Highest educational attainment: MBA at the Ateneo de Manila University and MPA at Harvard University

Work experience:

  • Chairman – Alunan Realty Company Inc.
  • Independent Director – Pepsi-Cola Philippines
  • Non-Executive Director – NLEX Corporation
  • Director, Sun Life of Canada (Philippines) Inc., Sun Life Financial Plans, Inc., and Sun Life Balanced Fund, Inc.
  • 1999-2007 – President – First Philippine Infrastructure Development Corp
  • 1999-2004 – President, Maynilad Water Services Inc.
  • 1992-1996 – Secretary, Department of Interior and Local Government
  • 1991-1992 – Secretary, Department of Tourism
  • 1989-1991 – Undersecretary, Department of Tourism
  • 1987-1989 – President, General Reliance Corp and Vice President of Filsyn Corp.
  • 1975-1989 – President, Rafael Alunan Agro-Development Corporation

 Policies/advocacies

  • Chairman – Alunan Realty Company Inc.
  • Independent Director – Pepsi-Cola Philippines
  • Non-Executive Director – NLEX Corporation
  • Director, Sun Life of Canada (Philippines) Inc., Sun Life Financial Plans, Inc., and Sun Life Balanced Fund, Inc.
  • 1999-2007 – President – First Philippine Infrastructure Development Corp
  • 1999-2004 – President, Maynilad Water Services Inc.
  • 1992-1996 – Secretary, Department of Interior and Local Government
  • 1991-1992 – Secretary, Department of Tourism
  • 1989-1991 – Undersecretary, Department of Tourism
  • 1987-1989 – President, General Reliance Corp and Vice President of Filsyn Corp.
  • 1975-1989 – President, Rafael Alunan Agro-Development Corporation

Political party: Bagumbayan Party

JV Ejercito (Joseph Victor Gomez Ejercito)

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He is the son of the former Philippine President Joseph Estrada. Despite his father and brother’s tarnished reputation, he managed to establish a stellar record as a senator. He is vying for re-election and promises to focus on infrastructure development and railway system if ever he wins again.

For your information

Age:  49

Residence:  San Juan City

Highest educational attainment:

Bachelor of Arts in Political Science at the De La Salle University

Work experience

  • 2001- 2010 – Mayor of San Juan Cty
  • 2010 – 2013 – House Representative
  • 2013 – present – Senator of the Philippines

Legislative highlights:

  • Senate Bill No. 1896 or the Universal Health Care Act
  • Republic Act No. 10645, mandatory PhilHealth Coverage for All Senior Citizens
  • Republic Act No. 11036 or The Mental Health Act
  • Republic Act No. 11081 the act increasing the bed capacity of Veterans Regional Hospital and changing its name to Region II Trauma and Medical Center
  • Republic Act No. 11082, an act upgrading the Southern Isabela General Hospital in Santiago City into a tertiary General Hospital to be known as the Southern Isabela Medical Center
  • Republic Act No. 10646, Charter of the Quezon City Development Authority
  • Republic Act No. 10884, balanced housing development program amendments
  • Republic Act No. 10881 entitled an Act Amending Foreign Ownership Restriction
  • Republic Act No. 10879 or the “MIMAROPA Act”
  • Republic Act No. 10922 or the “Economic and Financial Literacy Act”

Advocacies/platforms

  • Harness the full potential of the public transport system
  • Push for a measure that will empower the energy sector while raising the consciousness of the people about conservation and exploration of “clean and green” energy sources.
  • Promote job security and ensure constant growth of the labor sector.
  • Make our farmers and fishermen real partners of the government.

Political party: PDP-Laban

For an in-depth read on, you can check his bio here.

Sonny Angara

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Currently serving as a member of the Senate and is vying for re-election. He was recognized as one of the Ten Outstanding Young Men for government service and legislation in 2010, and one of the Outstanding Manilans for public service in 2017.

For your information

Age: 46

Residence: Baler, Aurora

Highest educational attainment:  

Master of Laws degree from Harvard Law School in Cambridge, Massachusetts, United States.

Work experience:

  • Senator, 2013-present
  • Chair, Philippine Senate Local Government Committee, 2016-present
  • Chair, Philippine Senate Ways and Means Committee, 2013-present
  • Chair, Philippine Senate Games, Amusement, and Sports Committee, 2013-2016
  • Vice-Chair, Philippine Senate Blue Ribbon Committee, 2016-present
  • Vice-Chair, Philippine Senate Education, Arts, and Culture Committee, 2016-present
  • Vice-Chair, Philippine Senate Committee on Finance, 2016-present
  • Vice-Chair, Philippine Senate Committee on Labor, Employment and Human Resources, 2016-present
  • Vice-Chair, Philippine Senate Committee on Sports, 2016-present
  • Congressman, Lone District of Aurora, 2004-2013

 Legislative highlights

  • RA 10653 a bill that stipulates that 13th-month pay and other benefits not exceeding P82,000 shall be tax-exempt
  • RA 10708 or the Tax Incentives Management and Transparency Act (TIMTA) which promotes transparency and accountability in the grant and administration of tax incentives to registered business entities;
    RA 10754 that exempts persons with disabilities (PWDs) from value-added tax (VAT).
  • RA 10863 or the Customs Modernization and Tariff Act (CMTA) which introduces reforms to Customs procedures including the raising of the tax exemption ceiling of balikbayan boxes.
  • RA 10691 or the Act Strengthening the Public Employment Service Office (PESO) to help more Filipinos, especially in poorer areas, get a job.
  • RA 10706 or the Seafarers Protection Act, which prevents ambulance chasers, particularly lawyers, from taking advantage of the plight of seafarers.
  • RA 10801 or the Overseas Workers Welfare Administration (OWWA) Act, which strengthens government’s support to OFWs and mandates greater representation of OFWs in OWWA so that the needs and sentiments of Filipinos abroad will be better addressed.
  • RA 10771 or the Philippine Green Jobs Act
  • RA 10741 or the Act Strengthening National Labor Relations Commission (NLRC)

Policies/advocacies

  • Education programs (free college, Unified Student Financial Assistance System Act)
  • Senior citizen welfare
  • Universal healthcare

Political party: Laban ng Demokratikong Pilipinas

For an in-depth read on Sonny Angara, you can check his bio here.

Pia Cayetano

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She is the youngest woman elected in the history of the Philippine Senate and a champion of women’s rights and staunch advocate of health. She’s also one of the most prolific senatorial candidates in this term’s election due to her length of service in the government (she’s had 10 years in public service)

For your information

Age: 52

Residence: Taguig City

Highest educational attainment:  Bachelor of Laws at the University of the Philippines in Diliman

Government work experience:

  • Representative, Second District of Taguig, 2016 – Present (Deputy Speaker of the House of Representatives)
  • Senator, Senate of the Philippines, 2004 – 2016
  • Chairperson, Philippine Senate Committee on Health and Demography, 2010 – 2016
  • Chairperson, Philippine Senate Committee on Youth, Women and Family Relations, 2010 – 2016
  • Chairperson, Joint Congressional Oversight Committee on the Clean Water Act of 2004
  • Chairperson, Committee on Environment and Natural Resources, Senate of the Philippines, 2004 – 2008
  • Chairperson, Committee on Health and Demography, Senate of the Philippines, 2004 – 2008
  • Co-Chairperson, Joint Congressional Oversight Committee on the Philippine Clean Air Act of 1999, 2004 – 2008
  • Co-Chairperson, Joint Congressional Oversight Committee on the Ecological Solid Waste Management Act of 2000, 2004 – 2008
  • Co-Chairperson, Joint Congressional Oversight Committee on the Philippine Clean Water Act of 2004, 2004 – 2008
  • Assistant Majority Floor Leader, Senate of the Philippines, 2004 – 2007
  • Inter-Parliamentary Union (IPU)
  • President, Coordinating Committee of Women Parliamentarians Inter-Parliamentary Union (IPU), 2008 – 2010
  • First Vice President, Coordinating Committee of Women Parliamentarians Inter-Parliamentary Union (IPU), 2006 – 2008
  • President, 10th Meeting of Women Parliamentarians 112th Inter-Parliamentary Union Assembly, April 2005

Policies/Platform

  • Women, children and elderly
  • Reproductive health
  • Sports, a healthy lifestyle and proper nutrition
  • Increased tobacco taxation
  • HIV-AIDS policy
  • Environmental awareness
  • Affordable and quality drugs
  • Presyo, Trabaho, Kita (PTK)
  • Increase English literacy to raise global competitiveness

Political party: Nacionalista

For an in-depth read on Pia Cayetano, you can check his bio here

Bong Go

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Christopher Lawrence “Bong” Go is the popular assistant of President Rodrigo Duterte. Just like the President, he is a native of Davao City and has served the President even before his term as the Chief Executive of the country.  While he didn’t hold any formal post in the government during Duterte’s time as Mayor, Bong Go has played a vital part in disseminating aid to the people who needed it in Davao Region as Duterte’s right hand.

For your information

Age: 44

Residence: Davao City

Highest educational attainment: 

Management Degree De La Salle University Manila

Government work experience:

  • 2016-2018 – Special Assistant to the President
  • 2016 – Personal Campaign Assistant of then Mayor and Presidential Candidate Rodrigo Duterte
  • 1998-2016 – Executive Assistant and Personal Aide of then mayor

Policies/Platform

  • Access to free and quality medical assistance and services
  • Food Security
  • Establish more rehabilitation centers and reformation centers nationwide
  • Amend the Juvenile Justice Law so that minors will not be used by criminal syndicates
  • Study the need to impose death penalty, particularly on heinous crimes involving illegal drugs
  • Decent, and safe housing program
  • Construct safe, permanent and dedicated evacuation centers
  • Empowerment of local government units to provide quality education
  • Study the need to possibly impose higher penalties for all corruption-related crimes
  • Support all mechanisms for LGUs to pursue localized peace talks in conflict areas
  • Establish safe, permanent and dedicated evacuation centers
  • Create a separate Department for OFWs for better coordination among related agencies, shorter reaction time for OFWs in distress and improved services in handling all OFW concerns
  • Push for the enactment of the Magna Carta for barangay officials
  • Create the National Senior Citizens Commission
  • Enact a law that will provide free medicines to all senior citizens
  • Increase the amount of the Social Pension Fund
  • Strengthen the Bureau of Jail Management and Penology

Political party: PDP-Laban

For an in-depth read on Bong Go, you can check his bio here 

Lito Lapid

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An actor and a former senator, he is eyeing for a Senate comeback. From actor to public servant, Lapid came from humble beginnings – a stuntman.  Serving the public has taken him from Pampanga to the Senate, where he fathered one of the meaningful social legislation of the 14th Congress, the Free Legal Assistance Act of 2010 which seeks to ensure that the poor may be afforded free quality legal service.

For your information

Age: 63

Residence: Pampanga

Highest educational attainment: Secondary education

Work experience

  • 1992-1995 – Vice Governor of Pampanga
  • 1995-2004 – Governor of Pampanga
  • 2004-2010 – Senator
  • 2010-2016 – Senator

Legislative highlights

  • Republic Act No. 9999 (Free Legal Assistance Act of 2010)
  • Republic Act No. 10367 (Biometrics Law)
  • Republic Act No. 10645 (Expanded Senior Citizens Act of 2010)
  • Total bills passed into law: 16
  • Important legislation:
  • Meat Labeling Act of 2011
  • Comprehensive Unilateral Hearing Loss Research and Development and Rehabilitation Act
  • Urban Agriculture and Vertical Farming Act
  • Corporate Social Responsibility Act
  • Kindergarten Education Act
  • Adopt-A-Wildlife Species Act

Advocacies/platforms

  • Allocate P200 million for loans to local film producers
  • Lower taxes on film theaters
  • Affordable education

Political part: Nationalist People’s Coalition

For an in-depth read on   Lito Lapid you can check his bio here.

Zajid Mangudadatu

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For your information

Age: 43

Residence: Maguindanao

Highest educational attainment: Degree in Biology, Special course in Effective Legislation and Governance

Work experience

  • 2013-2019 – 2nd District Representative of Maguindanao
  • 1996-2002 – Sangguniang Kabataan Federation President in the Municipality of Buluan
  • 2007-2013 – Mayor of the Municipality of Pandag

Legislative highlights:

  • House Bill 6893 which seeks to regulate treatment technologies for the disposal of municipal and hazardous wastes
  • House Bill 5707 aiming to rightsize the national government. This bill will minimize, if not eliminate, the redundancies, overlaps and duplication of government agencies’ operations and simplify its rules and regulations, systems and processes.
  • House Bill 2225 which imposes an additional pay for BPO employees for their work done during night time to appropriately compensate for the risks of serious health problems that they might obtain.
  • House Bill 2226 which seeks to ensure retail fuel consumers receive what they paid for through regulation of the calibration of oil fuel pumps.

Advocacies/platforms

  • Change the negative perception of Maguindanao.
  • Peace and order in Maguindanao.
  • Rural development by improving transport access
  • Improving energy and electricity
  • Health services and facilities provision
  • Poverty alleviation.
  • Improve investments and attract more stakeholders in Maguindanao.

Political part: PDP Laban

For an in-depth read on   Zajid Mangudadatu, you can check his bio here.

Jiggy Manicad

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A veteran journalist by profession, he is now aspiring to be a policymaker who will focus on the issues surrounding OFWs and promote nationalism better to every Filipino.

For your information

Age: 44

Residence: Camarines Norte

Highest educational attainment: International Broadcasting Degree at Cardiff University

Work experience:

  • Reporter, GMA Network
  • Writer, Magandang Gabi, Bayan of ABS-CBN
  • Assistant Editor, International Rice Research Institute (IRRI)

Advocacies/platforms

  • Federalism
  • Anti-Political Dynasty
  • Reintegration Program for Returning OFWs
  • Nationalism as expressed by singing the National Anthem every day

Political party: Independent

For an in-depth read on Jiggy Manicad, you can check his bio here.

Imee Marcos

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She is the incumbent governor of Ilocos Norte Province and the daughter of former President Ferdinand Marcos, and now one of President’s Duterte’s senatorial candidates. In her tenure, she has authored 30 bills with 13 of them refiled and passed into law.

For your information

Age: 63

Residence: Ilocos Norte

Highest educational attainment: Law at Princeton University

Work experience

  • Governor, Ilocos Norte (2010-present)
  • Congresswoman, Ilocos Norte 2nd District (1998-2007)
  • Assemblyman, Ilocos Norte (1984-86)

Legislative highlights

  • HB 244- An act Redefining the Word “ Prostitutes” thereby amending
  • the article 202 number 5 of the Revised Penal Code of the Philippines*
  • HB 620- An Act Providing for a Magna Carta of Students
  • HB 694- An act providing for the fair and equitable allocation of the department and education culture and sports items for teaching and nonteaching positions
  • HB 1092- An act creating the Philippine commission on women, defining its power, function, and responsibilities, appropriating funds, therefore, and for other purposes

Advocacies/platforms

  • Suspension of Value-added Tax (VAT) on agricultural and medicinal products, plus gasoline.
  • Expansion of Philippine entertainment industry.
  • Alternative fuel for vehicles
  • Lower rice, food, cellphone load prices
  • Better access to internet connectivity
  • LGBTQ rights

Political party: Nacionalista

Willie Ong

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A veteran General Practitioner who’s provisioned free medical services to the public through his private practice. He’s famous for the title “Doktor Para Sa Masa” and he never fails to live up to it with the use of his own resources and passion to help the poor and those in need of his medical services.

For your information

Age: 55

Residence: Metro Manila

Highest educational attainment:  Masters in Public Health

Work experience

  • Founder and chair of Society of Philippine Health History (2003 – Present)
  • Volunteer doctor at Salamat Dok, ABS-CBN
  • Columnist at Pilipino Star Ngayon
  • Columnist at Philippine Star
  • Consultant, Department of Health (2010-2014)

Advocacies/platforms

  • Free laboratory tests under PhilHealth.
  • Free health consultations.
  • Affordable medicines.
  • Improved health care facilities and equipment.
  • Bills for universal health care, and cancer.

Political party: Lakas-CMD

For an in-depth read on Willie Ong, you can check his bio here.

Koko Pimentel (Aquilino Martin De Pimentel III)

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Currently a sitting Senator of the Philippines and a former Senate President from 2016 to 2018.

For your information

Age: 55

Residence: Cagayan De Oro

Highest educational attainment:

Bachelor of Laws and Doctor of Humanities

Work experience

  • Senator, Senate of the Philippines, 2011-2019
  • Senate President, Senate of the Philippines, 2016-2018
  • Chairperson, Philippine Senate Committee on Electoral Reforms and People’s Participation, 2011 – 2013, 2018 – 2019
  • Chairperson, Philippine Senate Committee on Trade, Commerce, and Entrepreneurship, 2018 – 2019
  • Chairperson, Philippine Senate Committee on Games and Amusement, 2011-2013

Legislation highlights

  • RA 10165 Foster Care Act of 2010: aims to strengthen foster care for children nationwide
  • RA 11035 Balik Scientist Act: science, technology, or innovation experts of Filipino descent will be given benefits, incentives, and privileges under the Balik Scientist Program
  • RA 10932 Anti-Hospital Deposit Law: increases the penalties on hospitals and medical clinics who refuse to administer medical treatment in emergency cases
  • RA 10867 National Bureau of Investigation Reorganization and Modernization Act: aims to expand the structure, capability, and manpower of the NBI
  • RA 11054 Bangsamoro Organic Law: establishes a political entity that secures the identity and posterity of the Bangsamoro people and other inhabitants in the autonomous region in Muslim Mindanao
  • SB 1620 Abolition of the Road Board: transfers the powers and functions of the Road Board to the Department of Public Works and Highways and the Department of Transportation
  • RA 10380 Absentee Voting for Members of the Media: allows members of the media who are unable to vote on election day due to the performance of their functions in reporting and covering the elections to vote under the local absentee voting system
  • RA 10366 Election Voting Accessibility Law: designs systems and procedures that will enable persons with disabilities and senior citizens to exercise their right to political participation without discrimination or restrictions
  • RA 10367 Biometrics Law: establishes an updated list of voters through the adoption of biometric technology
  • RA 10645 Expanded Senior Citizens Act: provides health insurance for all senior citizens under PhilHealth
  • RA 10660 Streamlining the Sandiganbayan: strengthens the functional and structural organization of the Sandiganbayan
  • RA 10910 Amending Republic Act 3019: increases the prescriptive period for violations from fifteen to twenty years

Advocacies/platforms

  • End of contractualization
  • Federalism
  • Countering inflation

Political party: PDP-Laban

For an in-depth read on Koko Pimentel, you can check his bio here.

Bato Dela Rosa (Ronal Bato Dela Rosa)

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The former Chief of Police under the Duterte Administration until April 19, 2018, and the Director of the Bureau of Corrections from April 30, 2018 to October 30, 2018. A first time senatoriable and endorsed by President Duterte.

For your information

Age: 57

Residence:  Davao City

Highest educational attainment:

Masters of Public Administration, PhD in Development Administration

Work experience

  • 2018 – Chief, Bureau of Corrections
  • 2016-2018 – Chief, Philippine National Police
  • 2012-2013 – Director, Davao City Police Office
  • 1999-2001 – Assistant, Office of the Police Director, Camp Crame in Quezon City
  • 1997-1999 – Police Provincial Director, Compostela Valley Province
  • 1992-1997 – Chief-Inspector, Police Regional Office (PRO)-Davao
  • 1986 – Lieutenant, Philippine Constabulary

Advocacies/platforms:

  • Law enforcement
  • Peace and order
  • Creation of a Department of Corrections
  • War on drugs

Political party: PDP-Laban

Francis Tolentino

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A Filipino politician who is better known known for his stint as the ninth chairman of the Metropolitan Manila Development Authority from 2010 to 2015. This is his second bid for Senate with the hopes of finally getting a seat.

For your information

Age: 59

Residence: Tagaytay

Highest educational attainment:

  • Law School – Ateneo de Manila University
  • Graduate School – University of London
  • Course – Master of Laws
  • Graduate School – National Defense College of the Philippines
  • Course – Master of National Security Administration

Work experience

  • 2017-2018 – Presidential Adviser for Political Affairs
  • 2010-2015 – Chairman, Metropolitan Manila Development Authority (appointed by President Benigno Aquino III)
  • 1995-2004 – Mayor, Tagaytay City
  • 1986-1988 – OIC Mayor, Tagaytay City (appointed by President Corazon Aquino)

Advocacies/platforms

  • Environmental justice
  • Death penalty

Political party: PDP-Laban

Cynthia Villar

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Currently, a sitting senator who is vying for re-election. She was then a financial analyst and a college profession prior to her entrepreneurial ventures and later on a term in public service.

For your information

Age: 68

Residence: Las Piñas, Metro Manila

Highest educational attainment:

  • Masters in Busines Administration, New York University
  • Doctor of Laws, University of the Philippines Los Banos

Work experience

  • Former President – Lady Legislators
  • 2001-2010 – District Representative, House of Representatives, (12th, 13th, and 14th Congress)
  • 2013-2019 Senator, Senate (16th and 17th Congress)
  • Managing Director of Villar Social Institute for Poverty Alleviation and Governance

Legislation highlights:

  • RA 9298 – Anti-trafficking in Persons Act of 2003
  • RA 9262 – Anti-Violence against Women and their Children Act of 2004
  • RA 9231 – Elimination of the Worst Forms of Child Labor & Affording Stronger Protection for the Working Child of 2003
  • RA 9255 – An Act Providing Legitimate Children may use the Surname of their father, amending for the Purpose Article 176 of the Family code in 2004
  • RA 9344 – Juvenile Justice and Welfare Act of 2006
  • RA 9257 – Expanded Senior Citizens Act of 2003
  • RA 9710 – Magna Carta of Women
  • RA 9994 – Comprehensive Senior Citizens Act (COSCA) of 2009
  • Republic Act No. 10654 –The Philippine Fisheries Code of 1998
  • Republic Act No. 10687 – Unified Student Financial Assistance System for Tertiary Education (UniFAST) Act
  • Republic Act No. 10816 – Farm Tourism Development Act of 2016

Advocacies/platforms

  • Poverty alleviation through livelihood projects

Political party:

For an in-depth read on Cynthia Villar, you can check her bio here.

Freddie Aguilar

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This candidate is renowned as a famous Filipino singer and a prolific songwriter. One of his most popular songs is “Anak” (Child) which has been released in 59 countries and translated into 26 languages. He had a short stint in the government as a Chairperson of the National Commission for Culture and Arts.

For your information

Age: 66

Residence: Manila

Educational background: Electrical Engineering

Related experience:

Former Chairperson of the National Commission for Culture and Arts.

Policies/advocacies

  • The welfare of entertainers, farmers, and indigenous people.
  • Adoption of a jury system

Opposition candidates

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What do you get when a coalition between the Liberal Party of the Philippines and prominent Leftist groups is combined? —-  the Otso Diretso. 8 candidates brandishing a multi-party electoral alliance for the 2019 lineup. They brand themselves as the driver of a new political culture if elected, offering fresh candidates that aren’t necessarily political newbies.

Gary Alejano

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A mutineer and an ex-marine member. He’s one of the cadets who got involved in the failed Oakwood mutiny in 2003 in the Manila Peninsula Siege.

For your information

Age: 46

Residence: Sipalay City

Highest educational attainment:

  • Degree in Naval Systems Engineering at the Philippine Military Academy
  • Masters of Management at the University of the Philippines Open University

Work experience

  • 2013 – 2019 – Magdalo Party-list Representative

Legislative highlights

  • RA 10844: The Department of Information and Communications Technology Act of 2015
  • RA 11166: Philippine HIV and AIDS Policy Act
  • RA 11036: Mental Health Act
  • RA 11228: Mandatory PhilHealth Coverage for all PWDs

Advocacies/platforms

  • Defense of Philippine waters
  • Democracy
  • Food, livelihood, and environmental security

Political party: Liberal Party

For an in-depth read on Gary Alejano, you can check his bio here.

Bam Aquino (Paolo Benigno Aguirre Aquino IV)

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Carrying a surname that needs no further introduction, Bam is a former youth leader and a social entrepreneur. He currently sits as a Philippine senator since 2013 and is vying for re-election. During his service in the Senate, he has advocated for the passage of bills focusing on entrepreneurship, culture, and arts, education as well as science and technology.

For your information

Age: 41

Residence: Quezon City

Highest educational attainment:

Graduate studies at Ateneo de Manila Law School and

Work experience

  • 2001 – 2003 – Commissioner-At-Large, National Youth Commission,
  • 2003 – 2006 – Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, National Youth Commission,
  • 2013 – 2019 – Senator, Senate of the Philippines,
  • 2013 – 2016 – Chairman, Philippine Senate Trade and Commerce Committee,
  • 2016 – 2017 – Chairman, Philippine Senate Education, Arts and Culture Committee,
  • 2016 – Present – Chairman, Philippine Senate Science and Technology Committee

Legislative highlight:

  • RA 10644 “Go Negosyo Act”, an act promoting job generation and inclusive growth through the development of micro, small and medium enterprises
  • Senate Bill No. 1798, an automatic suspension of the excise tax on fuel under Republic Act No. 10963 (TRAIN )
  • Senate Bill No. 683 “Anti-Discrimination Act”, an act prohibiting discrimination of the basis of ethnicity, race, religion or belief, sex, gender, sexual orientation, gender identity, gender expression, civil status, and HIV status
  • RA 11055 “Philippine Identification System Act”, an act establishing the Philippine Identification System

Advocacies/platforms

  • Development of medium and small enterprises (MSEs)
  • Free education
  • End contractualization
  • Youth
  • Trade, commerce, and entrepreneurship

Political party: Liberal Party

For an in-depth read on Bam Aquino, you can check his bio here.

Chel Diokno (Jose Manuel “Chel” Icasiono Diokno)

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A Filipino lawyer, politician, and human right lawyer. He has become popular in his craft for providing free legal assistance to indigenous groups and as a Professor at De La Salle University College of Law since 2009.

For your information

Age: 58

Residence:  Manila Philippines

Highest educational attainment:

Juris Doctor of Laws at Northern Illinois University (NIU)

Work experience:

  • 1987 – present – Lawyer at Free Legal Assistance Group (FLAG)
  • 2001 – General Counsel of the Senate Blue Ribbon Committee (the Committee on Accountability of Public Officers and Investigation)
  • 2004 – Special Counsel of the Development Bank of the Philippines
  • 2006 – present – Founder, Diokno Law
  • 2009 – present – Founding Dean, De La Salle University College of Law since 2009

Advocacies/platforms

  • Affordable legal services
  • Social welfare and protection
  • Inclusive economy
  • Environment
  • Uphold arbitral ruling on est Philippine Sea

Political party: Opposition Koalisyon (OK)

Florin Hilbay

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A lawyer and the former Solicitor General under the Aquino Administration from 2014 to 2016. He was the country’s agent in the arbitration proceeding in the Philippines vs China filed with the Permanent Court of Arbitration in 2013.

For your information

Age: 45

Residence: Tondo, Manila

Highest educational attainment:

  • BA Economics, University of Santo Tomas
  • Law, University of the Philippines
  • Master of Laws, Yale University

Work experience

  • 2004-2010 – Member, Bantay Katarungan
  • 2014-2016 – Solicitor General
  • Present – Director, Institute of Government and Law Reform, UP law Cente

Advocacies/platforms

  • Oversight of government expenditure
  • Anti-corruption measure
  • Stronger stand against WPS dispute
  • Rule of law

Political party: Aksyon Demokratiko

Samira Gutoc

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She is the only female candidate among those who identified themselves as the opposition. Also among the few candidates who hailed from the South, much more from the ARRM province. She is a Muslim activist and a writer, running as a first time senatoriable.

For your information

Age:  44

Residence: Marawi, Lanao Del Sure

Highest educational attainment:

  • M International Studies at UP Diliman
  • Bachelor of Laws, Arellano University

Work experience

  • Director – Marawi Resort Hotel, Inc. in Marawi City.
  • Member – Bangsamoro Transition Commission (BTC), formed to help draft the Bangsamoro Organic Law (Appointed by President Rodrigo Duterte)
  • Representative – Autonomous Region of Muslim Mindanao (ARMM) Assembly for Women Sector (Appointed by President Beningno Aquino III)
  • Director – Al-Amanah Islamic Investment Bank of the Philippines (2008 – 2012)
  • Member – Local School Board in Marawi City

Advocacies/platforms

  • Inclusive Mindanao Development
  • LGBTQ rights
  • Internally displaced persons (IDP) rights
  • Women empowerment
  • Peace

Political party: Liberal Party

For an in-depth read on Samira Gutoc, you can check her bio here.

Romulo Macalintal

An election lawyer for more than 3 decades, he has now decided to be a subject of it. Romulo Macalintal has been known to be a champion of senior citizen rights. He is vying for a Senate seat this upcoming election to champion electoral reforms and causes of senior citizens.

For your information

Age: 71

Residence: No information found

Highest educational attainment:

Degree in Commerce in Philippine College of Commerce (now known as Polytechnic University of the Philippines)

Law at University of the East, College of Law

Work experience

  • Veteran Benefits Counselor at the United States Veterans Administration
  • Election Lawyer at the Commission on Elections

Advocacies/platforms

  • Electoral reforms
  • Educating the youth on the suffrage
  • Expand cash grants for Filipino centenarian (PHP100,00/year)

For an in-depth read on Romulo Macalintal, you can check his bio here.

Erin Tañada (Lorenzo “Erin” Reyes Tañada III)

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Human and labor rights advocate, broadcaster, and lawyer – Eric Tanada in a nutshell. He was the Deputy Speaker of the Philippine House of Representatives from 2004 to 2013.

For your information

Age: 55

Residence: Manila

Highest educational attainment:

  • Bachelor of Laws at Manuel L. Quezon University

Work experience

  • 1987 – 1988 – Chairman, National Union of Students of the Philippines
  • 2004 – 2013 – Congressman 4th district of Quezon Province
  • 2004 – 2013 – Deputy Speaker, Philippine House of Representatives for Luzon

Legislation highlights

  • People’s Survival Fund
  • Cheaper Medicines Law
  • Renewable Energy Law
  • Anti-Enforced Disappearances Law
  • Extension of the Comprehensive Agrarian Reform Program
  • Amendments to the Philhealth Charter
  • Freedom of Information

Advocacies/platforms

  • Benefits and rights of workers
  • Adequate, stable, and consequential work
  • Proper wages
  • Education for mobilization and change

Political party: Liberal party

For an in-depth read on Erin Tañada, you can check his bio here.

Mar Roxas (Manuel “Mar” Araneta Roxas II)

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A former presidentiable in the 2016 election, also the chief of the Department of Interior and Local Government during the former President Noynoy Aquino’s term. Despite being involved in many political scandals, Mar Roxas had some outstanding contribution during his term. One of those is the boom of the BPO industry.

For your information

Age: 61

Residence: Roxas City Capiz

Highest educational attainment: 

Degree at University of Pennsylvania

Work experience

  • 1993-2000 – House Representative
  • 2000 – 2003 – Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) Secretary
  • 2004-2010 – Senator
  • 2011-2012 – Department of Transportation and Communications (DOTC) Secretary
  • 2012-2015 – Department of Interior and Local Government (DILG) Secretary

Legislative highlights

  • Republic Act No. 7880 (Roxas Law) – ensures fair distribution of the education capital budget among all the provinces.
  • RA 8759 – establishing in all municipalities a Public Employment Service Office an employment and information center.
  • RA 8748 – amending the Special Economic Zone Act by directly allocating to the municipality or city 2% (out of the 5%) gross tax to be collected from the establishments operating in the ecozone and providing for disturbance compensation for persons to be displaced or evicted by publicly-owned ecozones;
  • RA 8756 – a bill that incentivizes the creation of regional headquarters that help investment of multinational companies.

Advocacies/platforms

  • High-quality jobs
  • Disaster resilience
  • Educational infrastructure
  • Universal healthcare
  • Energy
  • Small and Medium Enterprise (SME) development
  • Agriculture

Political party: Liberal Party

For an in-depth read on Mar Roxas, you can check his bio here.

The race to the Senate has entered its last week with voters going to the polls this coming Monday, 13 May. We will keep you posted on the senatorial race with our roundup of the Independent candidates next as the countdown to the midterm elections heats up.

Image from gmanews.com

[Source 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6]

 

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