As the 19th Congress of the Philippines shifts into high gear, a dynamic group of neophyte party-list representatives has stepped up to the plate to champion their respective advocacies.
These emerging leaders, hailing from diverse sectors and communities, are fueled by a shared determination to drive positive change and tackle the pressing issues their constituents face.
Amidst the intricacies of parliamentary proceedings, these neophyte party-list representatives bring fresh perspectives and innovative ideas to the forefront. Their presence injects a renewed sense of energy and dynamism into the halls of Congress, sparking discussions on critical issues that demand attention. From social justice and environmental sustainability to labor rights and poverty alleviation, these representatives are keen on addressing the multifaceted challenges that confront our nation.
As we share snippets of their meaningful advocacies, we also asked them two important questions for readers to have a deeper appreciation for these new yet invigorated legislators.
What are the key issues that your partylist organization aims to address?
What measures so far have you proposed to address their unique needs and challenges?
HON. Bonifacio l. Bosita and HON. Ramon Rodrigo l. Gutierrez
1-Rider: Ensuring Rights and Safety for Motorcycle Riders
Rep. Bosita and Rep. Gutierrez represent Ang Buklod ng mga Motorista ng Pilipinas or 1-Rider Party List, championing the welfare and causes of riders nationwide, recognizing their vital role in delivering goods, facilitating trade, and ensuring mobility and safety. Their objectives include raising the standard of the transport system, improving its management, delivering sustainable services to the rider community, establishing a 24/7 Motorists Assistance Center, and advocating for legislation that addresses the pressing concerns and promotes the interests of riders. By prioritizing the holistic development and utmost service of the transport sector, the party list aims to elevate its economic competitiveness and enhance the well-being of riders and their families.
Reps. Bosita and Gutierrez of the 1-Rider Party-list are committed to advancing the welfare of riders and their families. Anchored in their RIDE principle, they strive to raise the standard and improve the entire transport system (land, sea, and air) while delivering sustainable services to the rider community. Through their Motorists Assistance Center, they engage with riders 24/7, addressing their concerns and needs. Furthermore, as a legislators, they actively propose bills and measures that promote the interests and welfare of riders, ensuring a thriving environment for all. Together, Reps. Bosita and Gutierrez embody the dedication and commitment of the 1-Rider Party-list in championing the rights and well-being of riders.
As a neophyte in the House of Representatives, the 1-Rider Party-list has been proactive in introducing bills and proposing legislation in the 19th Congress.
Notably, House Bill 3366, titled “An Act Enforcing Fair Traffic Apprehension, Granting for the Purpose Compensation to Drivers of Motor Vehicles for Improper Traffic Apprehensions And Imposing Administrative Sanctions for Erring Traffic Enforcement Personnel,” aims to bring fairness to traffic apprehensions. Similarly, House Bill 5115, titled “An Act Integrating Road Discharge and Safety Education in The Senior High School Curriculum and Appropriating Funds Thereof,” focuses on educating both riders and passengers on road disciplines.
Additionally, House Bill 4545, titled “An Act Protecting the Rights of Consumers in the Purchase of Motorcycles, including its parts and accessories, and helmet,” seeks to safeguard consumers’ rights in motorcycle purchases. These bills are currently undergoing committee hearings for further advocacy and lobbying.
In addition to legislative efforts, the party-list has launched the Motorists Assistance Center, providing round-the-clock support for riders to voice their concerns. Collaborating with institutions like DSWD, DOH, TESDA, as well as building strong relationships with MMDA and LTO, the 1-Rider Party-list is actively working to advance the interests of riders. Through ongoing breakthrough programs, they strive to effectively represent the diverse community of riders across the country.
HON. Jonathan Clement “jc” Abalos II
4Ps: Enhancing Social Welfare Programs
Rep. Abalos, of the Pagtibayin at Palaguin ang Pangkabuhayang Pilipino (4Ps) Party-list, is dedicated to empowering marginalized sectors and addressing poverty in the Philippines. Their party-list organization aims to help individuals break the cycle of poverty and achieve sustainable socio-economic progress. Rep. Abalos has proposed measures that focus on removing barriers and creating an enabling environment for marginalized individuals to thrive. Through comprehensive support systems and targeted initiatives, the 4Ps Party-list strives to uplift disadvantaged populations, improve their living conditions, and offer tangible solutions for poverty reduction.
The 4Ps Party-list aims to help individuals break the cycle of poverty and achieve sustainable socio-economic progress by proposing measures that remove barriers and create an enabling environment for marginalized individuals to thrive.
Rep. Abalos proposes measures to empower marginalized individuals, remove barriers, and create an enabling environment for socio-economic progress. These measures include addressing women’s issues, tackling discrimination faced by individuals with criminal records, advocating for an Election Day holiday, and increasing conditional cash grants to mitigate the impact of inflation and the pandemic on vulnerable populations.
HON. Lex Anthony cris a. Colada
AAMBIS-OWA: Empowering Visayan Farmers
Atty. Colada, the First Nominee and Representative of Aambis-Owa Party-List, is a dedicated advocate for Filipino farmers. With a strong track record in the House of Representatives, he has served as the Deputy Minority Leader and sponsored important measures for economic recovery. Atty. Colada, with his diverse background and educational achievements, including a Bachelor of Laws degree, brings valuable experience to his role. He has also made significant contributions as the former President of Iloilo 1 Electric Cooperative, Inc. (ILECO 1). Additionally, Atty. Colada is an accomplished farmer and game fowl breeder, with numerous awards and national championships to his name.
Aambis-Owa focuses on important issues such as food security, the development of Philippine agriculture, affordable and sustainable energy, efficient transportation, quality education, accessible healthcare, environmental preservation, poverty eradication, justice, and fairness.
Since assuming his role as a legislator, Rep. Colada has taken proactive steps to address these needs and challenges. He has filed bills for the development of specific agricultural industries, advocated for tax reform, restructuring of the mining industry, amendments to the EPIRA law, establishment of a nuclear power plant, privatization of PAGCOR, and introduced bills focused on vital agricultural products. Additionally, he actively participates in the national budget allocation for important government programs.
HON. Edvic G. Yap
ACT-CIS: Combating Crime and Terrorism
Rep. Yap, the representative of Anti-Crime and Terrorism Community Involvement and Support (ACT-CIS), brings a strong commitment to combat crime and terrorism. With a focus on enhancing law enforcement efforts and ensuring the safety and security of communities, Rep. Yap aims to champion initiatives that promote peace and protect the rights of citizens.
The ACT-CIS Partylist actively represents the face of the common Filipino, spanning across multiple sectors, particularly focusing on the oppressed and underprivileged. Branded as “Kakampi ng mga Inaapi” or “Defenders of the Oppressed,” they continuously advance the interests of marginalized, vulnerable, and underrepresented individuals.
They have authored 139 bills and co-authored 9 bills, addressing a wide range of pressing issues. Notable legislations include the Magna Carta for Barangay Healthcare workers, Security Guards, and Social Workers, as well as the Protection of Caregivers, Media Workers, and Freelance Workers. They have also worked towards increasing grants and benefits for Teachers, Centenarians, Persons with Disabilities, Filipino Athletes, Farmers, and Overseas Filipino Workers.
In pursuit of inclusivity, they also champion the Community-Driven Development Bill, empowering communities through participatory planning and decision-making based on their unique conditions. This legislation promotes bottom-up leadership and responsive governance, prioritizing the needs of the basic sectors and fostering consensus-building.
HON. Bryan b. Revilla
Agimat: Championing Marginalized Sectors
Rep. Revilla, representing Agimat Party-List, focuses on addressing key issues such as cybersecurity and information security. He recognizes the increasing cyber threats targeting critical infrastructure, which negatively impact trade, government services, and the people, particularly the underprivileged who heavily rely on these services.
To address these unique needs and challenges, he has proposed House Bill No. 8199, known as the Critical Information Infrastructure Protection Act. This bill aims to mandate covered firms, both public and private, to implement minimum information security standards for their ICT systems and enhance the country’s capacity to respond to cyberattacks. Rep. Revilla urges the swift passage of the CIIPA Bill to safeguard critical information infrastructure
HON. Wilbert t. Lee
AGRI: Promoting Farmers’ Welfare and Agricultural Reforms
Rep. Lee, the Representative of AGRI Party-list (AGRI-AGRA Na Reporma Para Sa Magsasaka ng Pilipinas), is a staunch advocate for the agriculture and fisheries sector, fighting for the rights and well-being of marginalized individuals. He prioritizes the advancement of Filipino workers’ welfare, ensuring their access to economic opportunities, food, education, and healthcare. With a remarkable portfolio, he has authored and co-authored 100 bills and actively serves on 24 Congressional Committees. Beyond his public role, Rep. Lee actively promotes food security, youth education, and livelihood opportunities for communities.
AGRI fights for the rights and welfare of farmers, fishermen, and food producers nationwide and aims to address pressing issues in various sectors, including healthcare, education, transportation, and housing. Their goal is to provide all Filipinos, particularly the marginalized, with access to quality government services, empowering them to improve their lives.
They have proposed several key measures to address the needs and challenges of the agriculture sector and marginalized communities. These include the Essential Crop Insurance Act, Agripreneurs Scholarship Program Act, Agriculture Pension Act, Rental Housing Subsidy Act, National Fertilizer Subsidy Act, Kadiwa Agri-Food Terminal Act, Post-Harvest Facilities Support Act, and more.
HON. Raul Angelo “jill” d. Bongalon
Ako Bicol: Progress and Livelihood Opportunities for Bicolanos
Rep. Bongalon represents the hopes and aspirations of Bicolanos as the second nominee of Ako Bicol Partylist, alongside party founder and chairman Rep. Elizaldy S. Co. With a background in youth leadership and a Juris Doctor Degree, he is dedicated to championing the rights and welfare of the Filipino people. As a neophyte in Congress, he holds important positions such as Assistant Majority Leader and Vice Chairperson of key committees.
Rep. Bongalon has authored numerous bills and resolutions focused on poverty alleviation, equal opportunities in education, quality healthcare, and sustainable livelihood. Some notable initiatives include the Media Workers Welfare Act, Universal Social Pension for Senior Citizens, and Amendments to the Universal Access to Quality Tertiary Education. Rep. Bongalon is a champion for every Bicolano in Congress, striving to make a positive impact on their behalf.
HON. Richelle Singson
Ako Ilocano Ako: Championing Ilocano Virtues
Rep. Singson represents Ako Ilocano Ako, a party-list focused on championing the interests of the Ilocano people. Singson aims to advocate for initiatives that promote economic development, cultural preservation, and social progress in the Ilocos region. By highlighting the rich heritage and potential of the Ilocano community, Singson strives to create opportunities and improve the lives of the Ilocano people.
HON. Ray t. Reyes
Anakalusugan: Enhancing Healthcare for All Filipinos
Rep. Reyes, representing Alagaan Natin Ating Kalusugan (Anakalusugan), is committed to improving healthcare services and access for all Filipinos. His focus includes addressing health disparities, promoting public health initiatives, and enhancing healthcare infrastructure. He advocates for policies that prioritize the well-being and health of the Filipino people.
Anakalusugan Party-list aims to address the gaps in Philippine healthcare, including the shortage of healthcare workers, the slow implementation of the Universal Health Care Act, and the need to amend the EPIRA Law for a rationalized national grid policy in terms of national security.
Rep. Reyes has filed House Bill 6631, which proposes the Nursing Scholarship and Return Service program to provide scholarships to deserving students. They are actively coordinating with the Philippine Health Insurance Corporation (PhilHealth) to extend assistance in expediting the implementation of the Universal Health Care Act. Moreover, the Committee on Energy is leading the move to amend the EPIRA, aiming to include provisions that rationalize the national grid framework in accordance with the Philippine Grid Code.
HON. Reynaldo s. Tamayo
ANGAT: Advancing Sustainable Agriculture and Food Security
Representing Agrikultura Ngayon Gawing Akma at Tama (ANGAT), Rep. Tamayo is committed to advancing the interests of the agricultural sector. His focus includes promoting sustainable farming practices, providing support for rural communities, and ensuring food security. Through policy advocacy and strategic initiatives, he aims to strengthen the agricultural industry.
HON. Michael m. Morden
API: Empowering Pangasinan and Ilocano Communities
Rep. Morden of API (Abante Pangasinan Ilokano) Party-list was motivated to pursue a career in politics by his desire to make a meaningful impact on the lives of those who are less privileged. As a newcomer to the position, he aims to champion specific policy changes and initiatives that align with his values and vision for his constituents. His advocacies include livelihood, peace, health, justice, education, environment, culture, youth, and women. Rep. Morden has filed bills addressing various issues such as healthcare accessibility, establishment of a national stockpile, benefits for community watchmen, creation of a medical corps, protection of Filipino seafarers, regulation of single-use plastic, and safeguarding the rights of the elderly against abuse and violence. Through his legislative efforts, Rep. Morden seeks to protect and improve the well-being of his constituents, focusing on their best interests and promoting a better future for them.
HON. Brian raymund s. Yamsuan
Bicol Saro: Empowering the Bicol Region
Rep. Yamsuan, representing Bicol Saro, is dedicated to empowering the Bicol region. Recognizing the region’s potential for growth and development, Yamsuan seeks to advocate for policies that promote economic opportunities, infrastructure development, and improved access to education and healthcare for the people of Bicol.
Having worked under three presidents and collaborated with several lawmakers, the opportunity to witness politics as a force for good and a catalyst for reforms inspired Rep. Yamsuan to pursue a political career. His primary priorities revolve around building a prosperous, resilient, and sustainable Bicol Region, where the residents can lead comfortable, safe, and productive lives.
Rep. Yamsuan aims to address key issues in the region such as invigorating the economy, improving education, and addressing the impact of climate change and an overarching goal to make the lives of Bicolanos comfortable, safe, and productive.
They have proposed measures such as establishing a Philippine Science High School campus in Camarines Sur to develop a skilled workforce for the digital age. They have also authored or co-authored over 170 bills focusing on reenergizing the economy, creating job opportunities, and promoting sustainable development in the face of the climate crisis. These include initiatives like creating special economic zones, establishing more TESDA training centers, and ensuring the region’s resilience to climate change.
HON. Felimon m. Espares
Coop-NATCCO: Cooperative Development
Rep. Espares, who represents Cooperative NATCCO Party (Coop-NATCCO), advocates for cooperative development. Recognizing the significant role of cooperatives in uplifting communities and supporting livelihoods, Espares aims to push for legislation that strengthens and promotes the growth of cooperatives across the country.
HON. Edwin L. Gardiola
CWS: Welfare of Construction Workers
Rep. Gardiola represents Construction Workers Solidarity (CWS), a party-list committed to the welfare of construction workers in the Philippines. Rep. Gardiola aims to push for policies that ensure fair wages, safe working conditions, and access to social benefits for construction workers. By advocating for the rights and well-being of the construction labor force, Rep. Gardiola strives to create a more dignified and secure future for these essential workers.
HON. Drixie Mae S. Cardema
Duterte Youth: Youth Engagement and Empowerment
Rep. Cardema represents Duterte Youth Party-List (DUTERTE YOUTH), a party-list focused on youth engagement and empowerment. Cardema aims to champion initiatives that promote youth participation in nation-building, educational reforms, and skills development programs. By harnessing the energy and ideas of the youth, Cardema seeks to create a brighter future for the Filipino youth.
HON. Raoul danniel a. Manuel
Kabataan Partylist: Youth Empowerment
Rep. Manuel, representing Kabataan Partylist, is a staunch advocate for the empowerment of the youth. With a focus on education, employment, and participation in decision-making processes, Manuel aims to champion policies that address the specific needs and concerns of Filipino youth, ensuring that their voices are heard and their rights are protected.
HON. Marissa “Del Mar” p. Magsino
OFW: Advocating for Overseas Filipino Workers
Rep. Magsino of the OFW Party List has filed a series of bills and resolutions aimed at addressing the needs and rights of overseas Filipino workers (OFWs). These measures cover a wide range of issues, including labor conditions, voting rights, financial assistance, healthcare, repatriation processes, and support for OFW families. By advocating for these proposals, Rep. Magsino seeks to provide comprehensive support and recognition for the invaluable contributions of OFWs while addressing the challenges they face in their work abroad.
The party-list has proposed legislations that includes measures such as the Fair Placement Fees for OFWs Act, BPO Workers’ Welfare and Protection Act, Classroom Management Support and Protection for Teachers Act, and Overseas Filipino Workers Exemption from the PhilHealth Contribution Act. They also aim to provide free public housing, ensure the right to adequate food, and recognize the contributions of organizations like the Rotary Club. Additionally, their bills focus on strengthening human rights education, providing legal assistance to migrant workers, and establishing OFW Family Centers for the welfare of OFWs’ families.
HON. Margarita Ignacia B. Nograles
PBA: Empowering Athletes
Rep. Nograles is a neophyte representative of the Puwersa ng Bayaning Atleta (PBA) Party List in the 19th Congress. With a diverse background in law, business, and academia, she brings valuable expertise to her role as a public servant. Rep. Nograles is committed to fostering positive change and promoting the welfare of her constituents through her active participation in legislative processes. Representing the sports, youth, and arts sector, she actively advocates for their interests on the national platform. As the assistant majority floor leader and a member of multiple committees, she plays a crucial role in shaping legislation that addresses the social, political, and economic needs of the country, carrying on the legacy of her late father, former Speaker Prospero “Boy” Nograles.
Rep. Nograles and the PBA Party-list seek to address a diverse range of key issues. Utilizing her legal expertise through her “Paano Ba Attorney?” segment, she educates people about legal matters. She has advocated for the conversion of Sulu State College into a university, combats agricultural smuggling (House Bill 3197), supports Filipino athletes (House Bill 03597), and grants additional benefits to Olympians and athletes (House Bill 4088). Moreover, she actively promotes human rights (House Bill 0674), health decentralization (House Bill No. 6174), equal protection (House Bill 1365), women’s empowerment, youth development, and mental health awareness, including anti-bullying initiatives. Through her legislative efforts, Rep. Atty. Migs Nograles aims to make a positive impact on education, agriculture, sports, human rights, health, justice, and the overall well-being of various sectors in the country
HON. Ivan Howard a. Guintu
PINUNO: Affordable Housing Opportunities
Rep. Guintu who represents Pinatatag na Ugnayan para sa mga Oportunidad sa Pabahay ng Masa or PINUNO Party-List aims to address the issue of homelessness and to cater to the needs of informal settlers families by giving them a voice in our legislative process.
In order to promote and advocate for the needs of informal settler families, PINUNO Party-List’s legislative agenda is primarily focused on socialized and affordable housing, livelihood programs for public housing beneficiaries, and the rights of informal settler families especially for the just and humane conduct of eviction or resettlement.
As part of their campaign promise, they have filed the following bills: Free On-Site Living Quarters for Public School Teachers Act; Home for Abandoned Senior Citizens Act; Just and Humane Resettlement Act; National Housing Development, Production and Financing Act; On-Site, In-City, or Near City Resettlement Act; Rent Relief Subsidy Act; Rental Housing Subsidy Program Act; Resilient Housing and Human Settlements Act; Sustainable Cities and Communities Act and the Teacher’s Housing Program Act.
HON. Jernie Jett V. Nisay
Pusong Pinoy: Community Development
Rep. Nisay of Pusong Pinoy Partylist is dedicated to tackling the pressing challenges faced by Filipinos. With a focus on health promotion, quality education, livelihood, infrastructure development, youth empowerment, safety, and agriculture, Pusong Pinoy strives to uplift marginalized communities and implement sustainable poverty alleviation programs. Rep. Nisay’s journey in public service began as a Barangay Chairperson and later as a City Councilor, where he championed pioneering ordinances for health services and improved the quality of life in Balanga City. Recognized for his dedication, he received prestigious awards such as the Bataan Circle of Heroes – Bayani Award and CSC Presidential Lingkod Bayan Award. Pusong Pinoy Partylist aims to create a society of equal opportunities, where no one is left behind, and inspire a unified stand for the greater good of all Filipinos and the Philippines as a whole.
HON.Caroline L. Tanchay
SAGIP: Alleviating Poverty
Rep. Tanchay represents Social Amelioration & Genuine Intervention on Poverty (SAGIP), a party-list dedicated to alleviating poverty and uplifting the lives of marginalized sectors. Rep. Tanchay aims to champion policies that promote social welfare, inclusive growth, and poverty reduction. By addressing the root causes of poverty and advocating for social justice, Tanchay seeks to create a more equitable and compassionate society.
HON. Jude A. Acidre
Tingog: Voice of the Eastern Visayas
Rep. Acidre, a dynamic public servant and the 2nd Nominee of Tingog Party-list, currently serves in the 19th Congress of the House of Representatives. He holds the position of Deputy Majority Leader. Acidre has a background as a youth leader, advocate, and political consultant. He has participated in various international conferences and programs, including the Inaugural Conference of Young Political Leaders and the Ship for Southeast Asian Youth Program.
TINGOG Party-list aims to provide regional perspectives on national issues. Their key areas of focus include improving family incomes, increasing social services, promoting innovative and proactive governance, and sustaining economic growth. They aim to achieve these goals through initiatives such as creating more industries and jobs, supporting MSMEs and agribusiness, enhancing education and healthcare accessibility, strengthening local government autonomy and disaster resilience, and investing in infrastructure and poverty reduction efforts.
TINGOG Party-list has been proactive in addressing the unique needs and challenges of their constituents. With around 247 bills filed in the 19th Congress, they have already achieved the approval of 68 bills in the third reading, awaiting Senate deliberation. Notably, they played a crucial role in the passage of Republic Act No. 11934, the SIM Registration Act. Their filed bills cover various areas such as regional development, ecological industrial zones, agricultural growth, protection of internally displaced people, and expanded tertiary education equivalency. Additionally, they have actively worked on expanding hospital capacities, including the Eastern Visayas Medical Center. These accomplishments were made possible through collaborative efforts with Rep. Yedda Romualdez and Speaker Martin Romualdez, according to Rep. Acidre.
HON. Samuel S. Verzosa jr.
Tutok To Win: Effective Governance
Rep. Verzosa, the representative of Tutok To Win, is committed to promoting effective governance. Rep. Verzosa aims to champion measures that enhance transparency, accountability, and efficiency in government service delivery. By promoting good governance practices, Verzosa strives to build public trust and ensure the responsible use of public resources.
HON. James “Jojo” Ang Jr.
Uswag Ilonggo: Advancing Ilonggo Welfare
Rep. Ang, representing the Uswag Ilonggo Party, is committed to advancing the welfare of the Ilonggo people. He focuses on a comprehensive five-point legislative agenda, which includes promoting the well-being of Ilonggo families, ensuring proper healthcare for the less fortunate, implementing consistent infrastructure and tourism programs, fostering progress in agriculture and aquaculture, and expanding scholarship opportunities for the youth.
Additionally, Rep. Ang actively builds strong relationships with communities and various sectors in the region, ensuring accessibility and responsiveness as a dedicated representative. His unwavering dedication to the vision of Uswag Ilonggo, accompanied by his diligent work and commitment to public service, drives his efforts to bring about progress and prosperity for the Ilonggos.
The neophyte party-list members of the House of Representatives of the 19th Congress bring diverse advocacies and perspectives to the table. Their collective aim is to champion the causes that their respective partylists represent, from community development, housing, and youth empowerment to regional welfare, sports development, and poverty alleviation.
Upholding these principles, they aim to build a stronger foundation for a truly representative democracy—truly poised to make a profound impact on legislation and policy-making within the esteemed House of Representatives for years to come.