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LP picks initial senatorial bets for 2022 polls

Philstar.com
LP picks initial senatorial bets for 2022 polls
This combination photo shows former Sen. Bam Aquino, Sen. Leila de Lima, human rights lawyer Chel Diokono, Sen. Risa Hontiveros and Sen. Francis Pangilinan.
The STAR / KJ Rosales | Philstar.com / AJ Bolando, file | The STAR / Joey Viduya | The STAR / Geremy Pintolo |

MANILA, Philippines — The once-ruling Liberal Party formally nominated on Tuesday its initial set of senatorial candidates for the 2022 elections, most of whom are senators gunning for reelection.

The LP’s National Executive Council passed a resolution nominating Sens. Kiko Pangilinan and Leila de Lima, and former Sen. Bam Aquino as the party’s initial senatorial candidates.

Sen. Risa Hontiveros from the Akbayan party and human rights lawyer Chel Diokno were also endorsed as part of the LP’s initial list of guest senatorial candidates.

Pangilinan, De Lima and Hontiveros are all eyeing a re-election in the Senate. Diokno is trying for the Senate again after a failed bid for a seat in the chamber in 2019. Meanwhile, Aquino has yet to announce his political plans for 2022.

LP president Pangilinan, whose political career began as a student activist during the regime of the late dictator Ferdinand Marcos, had been a senator from 2001 to 2013.

De Lima has served most of her first term as senator under detention over drug charges, she says, are trumped up by the administration of President Rodrigo Duterte, whom she probed for human rights violations as chairperson of the Senate justice committee.

Aquino was senator from 2013 to 2019, when he helped pass laws, including the provision of free tertiary education in public universities and colleges. He vied for reelection in 2019 under the opposition Otso Diretso ticket, but settled at the 14th spot, failing to claim a seat.

Hontiveros, meanwhile, is a champion of women’s and LGBT rights and is a vocal critic of the Duterte administration during her first term in the Senate, which she clinched in 2016 after failing in 2010 and 2013.

Diokno is the chairperson of the Free Legal Assistance Group and the founding dean of the De La Salle University College of Law. Like Aquino, he also mounted an unsuccessful senatorial bid in 2019 under the Otso Diretso ticket.

Senators from the Liberal Party and their ally Akbayan have been in the Senate minority bloc since 2017, when they were ousted from key positions following the arrest of De Lima. — Xave Gregorio with a report from Janvic Mateo/The STAR

2022 ELECTIONS BAM AQUINO CHEL DIOKNO KIKO PANGILINAN LEILA DE LIMA LIBERAL PARTY RISA HONTIVEROS
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