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Leading opposition will be ‘very challenging’ — Hontiveros

/ 12:39 PM June 28, 2022
Senator Risa Hontiveros delivers a speech after taking her oath of office before Vice President Leni Robredo on Monday, June 27, 2022.

Senator Risa Hontiveros delivers a speech after taking her oath of office before Vice President Leni Robredo on Monday, June 27, 2022. Photo from Sen. Hontiveros’ office

MANILA, Philippines — Leading the opposition “would be very challenging” amid the political climate in the country, re-elected Senator Risa Hontiveros said.

“It would be very challenging not just for any leader, but for the whole opposition,” Hontiveros told CNN Philippines’ The Source in an interview on Tuesday.

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Hontiveros is the lone opposition senator elected to the upper chamber in the 2022 elections.

On Monday, she took her oath of office before Vice President Leni Robredo, who turned over the opposition leadership to the senator.

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“All of us in the opposition will really have to take stock of things again [to] think about, ask, listen, [and] talk with each other, not just within the opposition, but within the larger citizenry [in regards to] what are the issues we are facing and how do we want to solve them,” she added.

The lawmaker underscored that being in the opposition is not simply “opposing” any administration, but rather presenting alternatives to address long-time issues.

“I think being [in the] opposition isn’t just opposing anyone on administration. It’s [about] presenting alternatives to long-time issues [and] presenting alternatives to the system itself,” she explained.

Further, Hontiveros said the opposition had an accumulation of hurdles, saying “some were cleared, attempted to be cleared, and a lot are still unfinished business.”

“We have an accumulation of hurdles in the past decades and in the past few years. Some of them we attempted to clear, some we’ve been able to clear, but there’s still a lot of unfinished business, still a lot of loose ends not tied up,” said Hontiveros.

Among these hurdles, she said, is the recognition and compensation of human rights victims, drawing accountability for corruption, territorial disputes, and emergence from economic recession caused by the pandemic.

She also stressed the need to “rebuild and build unities” among people.

“Still, the task of any government, any legislatures as part of the government, and the opposition as part of our society is truly rebuilding and building unities among our people,” Hontiveros ended.  — Iliana Padigos, INQUIRER.net intern

JMS

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