MANILA, Philippines — There are now seven candidates in the senatorial line-up of the tandem of former senator Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos Jr. and Davao City Mayor Inday Sara Duterte-Carpio.
During the Manila Virtual Caravan of the Marcos and Duterte-Carpio, who are vying for the posts of president and vice president, respectively, the tandem announced the following as members of its initial senatorial line-up:
- Incumbent Senator Sherwin Gatchalian
- Former presidential spokesperson Harry Roque
- Former Quezon City mayor Herbert Bautista
- Former senator Jinggoy Estrada
- Former Defense Secretary Gibo Teodoro
- Former Public Works Secretary Mark Villar
- Antique Rep. Loren Legarda
Except for Legarda, all senatorial candidates in the line-up were present during the online caravan.
Gatchalian, who currently chairs the Senate basic education committee, underscored the need to help the education sector which was impacted by the coronavirus pandemic. He urged local officials to help students and teachers in their respective areas.
Meanwhile, Roque is pushing for a “Free from COVID, free from hunger” initiative should he be elected to the Senate. He said he would promote the public’s right to food and clean water and a compensation fund for human rights victims.
Bautista said he would advocate strengthening local governance, adding the Local Government Code and other laws that need to be updated to operate in a “21st Century Philippines”. The former mayor said that there are also areas in the country with a poor internet connection, which affects many students.
Estrada said he would prioritize the provision of jobs for Filipinos since many lost their source of income due to the pandemic. He also pointed out that during his stint in the Senate from 2004 to 2016, he avoided being absent or late in sessions and hearings.
Teodoro, meanwhile, stressed that local autonomy—from the barangay level to provincial—should be strengthened so that the government can respond faster to the needs of the public. The fiscal and digital infrastructure, as well as the military and police capability in the country, should also be strengthened, he added.
Villar also underscored the importance of job generation, pointing out that the Duterte administration’s “Build, Build, Build” program was able to create thousands of jobs.