Robredo: ‘I won’t allow the Vice Presidency to be stolen’
Vice President Leni Robredo may be leaving the Cabinet of President Rodrigo Duterte but she will not allow anyone to steal the vice presidency from her.
“I will not allow the Vice Presidency to be stolen,” Robredo vowed as she made a shocking announcement of her stepping down as the chair of the Housing and Urban Development Coordinating Council (HUDCC) on Sunday evening.
Robredo said she decided to resign after receiving an instruction from the President, sent to her through a text message by Cabinet Secretary Jun Evasco, to stop attending Cabinet meetings starting Dec. 5, Monday.
Malacañang confirmed this and cited “irreconcilable differences” between Duterte and Robredo as the reason behind the President’s order.
In her statement to the media, Robredo noted that an alleged plot to take the vice presidency from her is “being set into motion.”
It can be recalled that Duterte, during an October event with the Filipino community in China, suggested that the late dictator’s son and namesake former Sen. Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos Jr. could be the new Vice President if he wins the electoral protest against Robredo.
A month later, Robredo raised concern about an alleged plan of recounting ballots from the May elections without permission from the Presidential Election Tribunal.
Robredo’s camp indirectly attributed it to Marcos, who is protesting the results of the vice presidential elections after the former Camarines Sur Rep. won by a slim margin of 263,473 over Marcos.
The rumor of ballot recount circulated days after the elder Marcos was sneakily entombed at the Libingan ng Mga Bayani, a move Robredo vehemently opposed.
The Nov. 18 secrecy-shrouded burial of the deposed strongman was carried out to fulfill the election promise of President Duterte to the Marcoses. This has sparked several anti-Marcos protests all over the country.
Duterte’s stance did not sit well with Robredo as she has been a staunch critic of the Marcoses, whom she hit for having ill-gotten wealth worth billions of dollars, as well as the human rights abuses committed during the dictatorial reign of the Marcos patriarch.
Since the campaign period, Duterte has been very open about his friendship with the Marcos family, noting that his father once joined the Cabinet member of the Marcos administration.
Before finally deciding to give Robredo the housing portfolio, Duterte would admit in his previous interviews that he’s not comfortable giving the Vice President a post in his Cabinet because it would “hurt his friend.”
Now Robredo’s camp fears that by allowing the Marcos burial, Marcos “stealing” the vice presidency may be also be possible.
Robredo hit the Marcoses for hurrying the burial and flouting the law, stressing that the Nov. 8 order from the Supreme Court has yet to become final and executory. Nine of 14 justices voted in favor of the Marcos burial.
Will the High Court, acting as the Presidential Electoral Tribunal (PET) handling the election case against Robredo, favor Marcos anew?
Robredo will address the nation on Monday at 5 p.m. at the Office of the Vice President at the Quezon City Reception House in New Manila, Quezon City.