Senatorial candidate Risa Hontiveros and Representative Kaka Bag-ao campaigned together yesterday in Dinagat Islands. Bag-ao represents the Lone District of the province in the House of Representatives.
As they spoke to the crowd in one of the proclamation rallies of #TeamKAKA in the municipality of Cagdianao, they both recalled their similarities as public servants.
Both of them served as Akbayan Party-List Representatives—Hontiveros in the 13th and 14th Congresses; Bag-ao in the 15th Congress.
They also share the same advocacies. Hontiveros and Bag-ao, during their respective terms, became authors of the Reproductive Health Bill, which was enacted into law in the 16th Congress. Before Bag-ao was elected, she worked with Hontiveros in ensuring the passage of the Comprehensive Agrarian Reform Program Extension with Reforms (CARPER).
“She was the first person to teach me about how to be a good legislator,” Bag-ao told the audience.
Bag-ao also encouraged Dinagatnons to support Hontiveros in the coming elections especially because of her platform that centers on health.
Dinagat Islands, since its establishment as a province in 2006, has been sorely lacking in terms of healthcare services. The few hospitals within it do not have full-time doctors and sufficient facilities to tend to the needs of Dinagatnons. Bag-ao has been lobbying in Congress since the beginning of her term as the Representative of the island province for funding to build a new hospital under the Department of Health—complete with quality medical equipment and permanent medical practioners.
“Risa will be our partner in the Senate to make this happen. With the two of us working together in both Houses of Congress, Dinagatnons will surely have access to quality and affordable healthcare,” Bag-ao said.
Hontiveros, the first senatorial candidate to set foot in Dinagat Islands during the campaign, explained her platform that focuses on better access to health, especially by the poor, during the Cagdianao proclamation rally of the #TeamKAKA slate headed by mayoral candidate Denden Longos.
She plans on filing legislation that will ensure the creation of “super barangay health centers with in-patient facilities to improve healthcare at the grassroots level.”
The former PhilHealth director also said that she will “prioritize the strengthening of the existing law against hospitals that demand a deposit before treating emergency cases” and the “promotion of quality maternal healthcare.”