Deputy Speaker Camille A. Villar first built a career in the private sector. After obtaining a Bachelor of Science in Management from Ateneo de Manila University and a Master’s Degree in Business Administration from the prestigious Institution de Estudios Superiores de la Eprese (IESE) Business School in Barcelona, she went on to help in the family business, managing the retail business operations of Villar Group under AllValue, and overseeing the rapid growth and expansion of AllValue group of companies.
However, growing up to a family of public servants, and accompanying her mother (Senator Cynthia Villar) and father (former Senate President Manny Villar) in political activities at a very young age, entering government seemed a natural, even inevitable, course for Cong. Camille. In fact, she convincingly won as Representative of the lone district of Las Piñas City in 2019.
Prioritizing healthcare services
When she was still a marketing professional, Cong. Camille would do healthcare outreach efforts, primarily visiting Las Piñas’ sick, as well as condoling with loved ones of the dead. It was through this that she realized what needs to be improved in the healthcare system—access, especially of the poor, to on-time emergency healthcare, medicines, regular checkups, and medical examinations.
When she was elected Representative of Las Piñas, she prioritized the filing of legislative measures that would address these concerns. The bills she authored include mandating local government units (LGUs) to have create emergency dispatch centers with adequate and qualified personnel; establishing a program for the employment of nurses in every barangay; creating a dental unit in every rural health unit; requiring all government hospitals to have a dialysis ward that will provide free dialysis medical procedure to indigent patients; and establishing a Cancer Medicine and Treatment Assistance Fund for underprivileged Filipinos, among other measures.
She hopes that these measures and the several other healthcare-related bills she filed, would be signed into laws and pave the way for better healthcare services, especially for poor patients.
Moreover, in 2019, prior to the onset of the global health pandemic caused by the COVID-19 virus, Cong. Camille filed a bill to increase the bed capacity of the Las Piñas General Hospital from 200 to 500 beds, as well as upgrading its service facilities and professional healthcare services. The measure was enacted into law in 2020, a timely intervention amid the public health crisis.
Meanwhile, in support of the Las Piñas City LGU’s vaccination drive and to encourage her constituents to get vaccinated against COVID-19, Rep. Camille came up with the “May Bahay sa Bakuna” Program, a raffle promo wherein vaccinated Las Piñeros had the chance to win prizes, including a House and Lot, all of which came from the Congresswoman’s personal funds.More than 300,000 residents joined in the promo.
She also shared that Las Piñas City, which has a population of over 600,000, has technically achieved herd immunity by having administered 850,000 doses of the vaccine, thanks to the LGU’s strong efforts.
MSMEs key to recovery
As an entrepreneur herself, Rep. Camille believes that, given the necessary support, micro, small, and medium enterprises (MSMEs), which consist of 95 percent of all businesses in the country, are essential to helping the economy bounce back post-pandemic.
Among the bills she filed that support MSMEs include strengthening the current Magna Carta for MSMEs by enhancing financing and other support programs; and institutionalizing the “One Town, One Product” Philippines Program to promote inclusive and sustainable economic development, and to foster advancement among MSMEs.
She is also dedicated to improving education, especially for the youth and women, and strengthening entrepreneurship.
In all her work for her constituents and the nation, Rep. Camille draws inspiration from her family — motivated by the good example and hard work of her parents, and strengthened by her will to protect and give the best for her own family, her husband and son.