Senator Risa Hontiveros on Tuesday slammed the latest tirade of Davao City Mayor Sara Duterte-Carpio after the latter challenged her to resign instead of demanding Public Attorney’s Office Chief Atty. Persida Rueda – Acosta to do so.
Duterte made this call in response to the statement of Hontiveros telling Acosta to resign for causing the public to mistrust the government’s vaccination program that led to a measles outbreak.
“Ikaw dapat magresign dahil wala ka ng sinabi na tama. Lahat sablay. PAO Chief Acosta is doing her job in assisting indigent litigants who want to sue,” Duterte said in her Instagram account on Monday, Feb. 11.
However, Hontiveros remained unfazed of the presidential daughter’s statement and instead rendered her gratitude for rendering her opinions about her work on democracy and human rights.
“Every time she attacks me, she validates my work and vindicates my positions on important issues. Every insult from the Mayor is a reading on the barometer I can use, second to none, to confirm how effective my office is in advancing democratic interests and goals,” Hontiveros said.
“Sa bawat banat niya, nalalaman natin na tama ang ating ginagawa.”
Hontiveros then called out how Sara ridiculed her opposition to the lowering of the Minimum Age of Criminal Responsibility (MACR), in which the latter even kindly advised her to walk the streets to “know the reality on the ground.”
In her defense of Acosta, Inday Sara also said the senator should stop criticizing and instead think of solutions.
“First, calling for Acosta’s resignation is part of the solution. Acosta’s resignation would remove the pseudo-science, fear-mongering, and lies that hijacked the Dengvaxia discourse,” Hontiveros said. She also added that “it would help ensure an impartial investigation of the issue, end speculations that the matter is being politicized and prevent further panic and fear from being inflicted on the public.”
“For someone who is supposedly against incompetence, the Mayor is surprisingly hostile to my call,” she said.
Hontiveros also pointed out that she was saddened on the call of Duterte for her to resign instead of condemning the killings of those affected by the outbreak itself.
“It is saddening that Mayor Sara can call for my resignation but not of those who have condoned the killing of tens of thousands, those who have eroded public trust in the government’s vaccination program, those who have plundered the nation’s coffers, those who have surrendered our sovereignty in the West Philippine Sea and those who have collaborated with the Marcoses in revising history,” she said.
“What’s keeping Mayor Sara from going after these people who are the real dangers to our nation and society?” she asked.
“As for solutions, my legislative track record speaks for itself. From the Mental Health Law, the Expanded Maternity Leave Law, the Strengthened Anti-hospital Deposit Law, the Safe Streets, and Public Spaces Act, the Philippine HIV and AIDS Policy law, the First 1000 Days Law up to the Positive Discipline Act, we have done the hard work. We have delivered,” she said.
“We do this even as we continue to add our voice of dissent to hold this government to account and defend democracy,” Hontiveros ended.