Vice President Leni Robredo on Monday passed the opposition leadership baton to Senator Risa Hontiveros, the lone opposition candidate who won in the 2022 Senate race.
This developed during Hontiveros’ oath taking ceremony administered by Robredo in her Quezon City office.
“Ikaw na ang aming leader. Nasa likod mo lang kami, tutulong, kung kailan mo kami kailangan. You are now the highest elected official in the opposition,” said Robredo three days before stepping down from public office
(You are now our leader. We got your back, and we will be here to help you out whenever you need us.)
“Kampante kami na patuloy mong ipaglalaban kung ano ang mabuting pamamahala, naroon kami na sumusuporta sa iyo. Kami na ang mga sundalo mo,” Robredo added.
(We are confident that you will continue to fight for good governance. We are here to support you. This time, we will be your soldiers.)
Hontiveros, in response, vowed to be fierce in the tough battle ahead.
“We will help spur economic growth and restore healthcare services disrupted by the pandemic. As promised, we will facilitate and push for increase of budgets for agencies integral to our recovery initiatives. Tuloy pa rin ang ating adbokasiya para sa Healthy Buhay at Hanapbuhay,” she added.
(Our advocacy for a healthy life and jobs remain.)
Likewise, Hontiveros vowed zero tolerance for fake news.
“I remain an advocate in protecting our constitutional freedoms and our most basic human rights: freedom of expression, freedom of assembly, freedom of the press. All these are fully guaranteed,” Hontiveros said.
“But we will not tolerate people who bear false information. We will fight back harder, against rumors, lies, propaganda, and fake news. Let me make this even clearer: this is a stern warning to all the dubious characters in the fake news universe: This time, we will not let your reckless disregard for truth slander our democracy–our country– ever again,” she added.
Tsek.ph, a fact-checking academe group Tsek.ph, earlier found that Robredo is the biggest victim of online disinformation while President-elect Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos, Jr. is the biggest beneficiary of such online disinformation.
Hontiveros also assured Robredo and the opposition of support even if the latter will now be engaged in anti-poverty initiatives outside of public office.
“We will continue to support and work with Vice-President Leni Robredo, other opposition leaders, parties, and movements to redress inequality on the ground. Pararamihin natin ang mga Pilipinong nakikibahagi sa proseso ng demokrasya, upang maramdaman ng mas marami pa ang mga resulta nito,” she said.
(We will get more Filipinos to participate in the democratic process so that more people will feel its benefits.)
“May we all remain strong in the fierce battle ahead,” she added.–AOL, GMA News