Robredo: Bishop David, Ressa show human rights fight is ‘not a lost cause’
MANILA, Philippines — Vice President Leni Robredo on Tuesday lauded Caloocan Bishop Pablo Virgilio David and Rappler chief executive officer Maria Ressa for showing that the fight for human rights is “not a lost cause.”
Robredo pointed out that Bishop David’s work showed how compassion and empathy can bring about truth and sustainable change.
“Our nation is prime to believe that to be ruthless is to be strong, but Bishop David has shown us that compassion is one of the greatest strengths that we can possess,” Robredo said in her speech at the Ka Pepe Diokno Human Rights Award ceremonies at the De La Salle University (DLSU).
“And that empathy, embodied by a whole community, is what can bring about truth and sustainable change,” she added.
Meanwhile, Robredo said Ressa’s resistance has become “revolutionary,” noting how the Rappler executive has remained unfazed in the face of intimidation.
“This is an era where we seem to be constantly brow-beaten until we get tired of resisting but Maria Ressa’s resistance has become revolutionary,
“She has left others dumbfounded by holding her head high and smiling in the face of intimidation and she has inspired the rest of us to hold the line with the power of a soft voice and razor sharp eloquence,” she added.
Robredo said the stories of David and Ressa are “important lessons” for the public who should not “meekly accept” harmful policies, lies and baseless threats sitting down.
“We celebrate both of you and your work for giving us much reason to believe that our fight for human rights is not a lost cause,” she said.
“Your stories are important lessons that we should not meekly accept what is forced upon us, harmful policies, outrageous lies, baseless threats, sitting down and that we can demand for better solutions and a more accountable government,” Robredo added.
David and Ressa are among the staunchest critics of President Rodrigo Duterte. The two were each given the Ka Pepe Diokno Human Rights Award by the DLSU. /muf