Press Release
March 8, 2017


Mr. President, I will not interpellate the lady senator from Capiz. I would just like to manifest my solidarity as well to all Filipino women who are celebrating the International Women's Day today.

We often forget how important women are in our lives - how they work hard to keep our homes and businesses going, how they raise our children with devotion, molding our youth to be future leaders, and contributing to the development of our country. Today, as we celebrate the International Women's Day, allow me to salute our own notable women who remain to be the country's driving force.

Foremost, I salute the lady senators here and those before them - Senator Loren Legarda, Senator Nancy Binay, Senator Cynthia Villar, Senator Risa Hontiveros and Senator Leila De Lima. May your brilliance, passion and feistiness continue to challenge and inspire all of us male senators here in this august chamber to step up our game and remain committed to doing what is right and just for our country. Know that it gives us great honor to serve our country and the Filipino people alongside with all of you, wonderful women.

Salute also to Environment Secretary Gina Lopez, who, only hours ago was here, passionately defending her plans and programs to the Committee on Appointments, and to all the courageous women like her in the Cabinet - Health Secretary Paulyn Ubial, Social Welfare Secretary Judy Taguiwalo, and Vice President Leni Robredo. To all women in government service, Governors, Mayors, Councilors, Barangay Captains, Nurses, Teachers and all the rest of government officials and employees, (including, of course, all the hardworking and beautiful women here in the Senate). I salute all of you!

Thank you for continuously reminding us what it means to be not only true leaders, but humans with hearts and souls. Thank you for working even harder than anybody else. Thank you for knowing when to put politicking aside in the interest of the people, for making sacrifices, to urgently address the needs of those we should nurture most - our environment, our health, and the most vulnerable of all, our women, children, Indigenous Peoples and Persons with Disabilities.

Isang mainit na pagbati and pagpupugay sa lahat ng kababaihan!

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