Does Cynthia Villar Hate Non-Working Holidays?
“Alam mo ‘pag lahat dineklara natin na non-working holiday, katakot-takot ang non-working holiday natin sa Philippines and that will destroy also the business, the economic condition of the Philippines,” Senator Cynthia Villar, the nation's richest senator with vast business holdings, said earlier this week on the sidelines of a Senate hearing.
(“If we declare everything as non-working holidays, and we have numerous non-working holidays here in the Philippines, that will destroy also the business, the economic condition of the Philippines.”)
Villar earned the ire of netizens this week after social media posts about her circulated depicting the senator as an anti-holiday crusader.
“There’s nothing wrong with working holiday kasi yung mga government employees naman, even if they are working, they can celebrate, they don't have to go to their offices. They can celebrate with the local government. Yun lang ang opinion ko diyan, kasi di ba sa atin sa senado, parang binabawasan na rin natin yung non-working holiday kasi ang dami-dami na nila,” she added.
(“There's nothing wrong with working holidays, even government employees are working, they can celebrate, they don't have to go to their offices. They can celebrate with the local government. That's my opinion, because at the senate, we are already lessening the non-working holidays because there are too many of them.” )
The context of Villar’s statement was about “Marcos Day” becoming a national non-working holiday.
The Senate Committee on Local Government, of which Villar is a member, had just met to approve House Bill No. 7137 from the lower chamber which seeks to declare September 11 a special non-working holiday in Ilocos Norte, in observance of the “President Ferdinand Edralin Marcos Day.”
“Yung padamihing masyado yung non-working holiday, that’s detrimental. Baka puro na tayo non-working holiday all-year-round,” she said.
(“It’s detrimental to increase the number of non-working holidays in the Philippines. We might end up having non-working holidays all-year-round.”)
Senators and employees at the senate work four days a week from 8 a.m. to 7 p.m. Because of the nature of their compressed workweek, some offices forego some non-working holidays.
Villar Tops Richest Senators List
Senator Cynthia Villar remained the wealthiest senator based on the latest list of Statements of Assets and Liabilities and Net Worth (SALN) submitted by the lawmakers released today.
As of December 2019, Villar was the richest among the 24 senators with a net worth of P3.81 billion. She posted a ?279-million increase in her assets in six months compared to her SALN in June 2019.
Villar and her family run the Villar Group of Companies, but their biggest source of revenue comes from their real-estate businesses.
Vista Land & Lifescapes Inc. operates housing brands Brittany, Crown Asia, Camella Homes, Communities Philippines, and Vista Residences.
The Villar Group also runs utility companies such as Prime Water, S.I. Power Corp., and Kratos.