'Babae, sakalam!': Hontiveros files resolution to commend Olympic silver medalist Nesthy Petecio

Published August 4, 2021, 3:13 PM

by Vanne Elaine Terrazola

Senator Risa Hontiveros is seeking to honor Filipino athlete Nesthy Petecio after bagging a silver medal in the 2020 Summer Olympics in Tokyo, Japan.

Hontiveros filed Senate Resolution No. 822 to commend Petecio “for making history as the first Filipina boxer to win an Olympic silver medal”.

Silver medallist Philippines’ Nesthy Petecio poses on the podium with her medal after the women’s feather (54-57kg) boxing final bout during the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games at the Kokugikan Arena in Tokyo on August 3, 2021. (Luis ROBAYO/POOL/AFP)

“Babae, sakalam! Filipinas making history twice in a row comes as no surprise. We are made of tough stuff. Hidilyn showed us it was possible, and Nesthy showed us that it’s just who we are,” said Hontiveros, who also chairs the Senate Committee on Women, Children, Family Relations and Gender Equality, said in a statement on Wednesday, August 4.

The senator also hailed Petecio for raising the flag not only for women, but also for members of the lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer (LGBTQ+) community.

“Nesthy punched through the glass ceiling for so many Filipino girls and members of the LGBTQIA+ community who dream to represent us in the world’s greatest sporting event,” Hontiveros said.

Petecio settled for silver against Japan’s Sena Irie in the Women’s Featherweight Division at the Tokyo 2020 Olympics. She is the first Filipina boxer to place in the Olympics.

Hontiveros said it would be an important move for the Senate to honor Nesthy Petecio to “officially mark Filipinas’ important place in history and in sports”.

“We all witnessed history unfold. We should take the opportunity to honor women when we triumph in spaces where men rule. Itatak natin sa kasaysayan natin ang mga panahong ang mga Pilipina ang nagwagi, lalo na sa pinakamapanghamong panahon para sa kahit sinong atleta (Let us remember Filipino athletes who triumphed over challenges that could be considered the most difficult for all athletes)” she said.

“Hidilyn and Nesthy embody the best of Filipino elite athletes: bold and fierce, outspoken in advocating their fellow athletes, and undeterred by the challenges thrown their way. Generations of Filipinos are going to remember their names. Their stories deserve to be told forever,” she added.

Before Petecio, weightlifter Hidilyn Diaz made history for bagging the Philippines’ first gold medal since joining the quadrennial games.