‘Ugaling elitista’: Moreno slams critics for calling his opinion on Robredo as ‘insult’
MANILA, Philippines — Manila City Mayor Francisco “Isko Moreno” Domagoso has condemned people he described as “elitists” for labeling his opinion on Vice President Leni Robredo’s decisions as an insult.
He asserted that it seems elitists see no problem about hurling criticisms as if they are entitled to it and the middle-class and poor people cannot just express their views, else their remarks be marked as impolite and condescending.
“Ang mahirap lamang, may mga ilang indibidwal talaga — whether in the present or in the past — na mga elitista, na kapag pinagsalitaan ‘yong kanilang mga — kaming middle class, kaming mahihirap, kapag sumagot kami at mangangatwiran, magiging bastos na,” he said during the Kapihan sa Manila Bay forum after being asked about claims he was being rude for questioning Robredo’s reasoning for her presidential bid.
The Vice President earlier admitted that Moreno’s supposed tendency to sympathize with the Marcoses was a factor in her decision to run for president next year.
“Eh hindi naman ako pumapayag nang ganoon, kasi kung meron man akong yaman sa buhay, o yaman ang tao sa buhay, ang kanyang dignidad, ang kanyang character. We must continue to value that,” Moreno added.
According to Moreno, indigent people also have a right to speak and defend their stand on various issues — justifying his statements doubting Robredo’s decision to run for president just to block the Marcoses from returning to Malacañang.
Robredo said in the past that she has two considerations for her candidacy: to stop a Palace comeback of the Marcoses and to prevent a governance style similar to President Rodrigo Duterte’s. But Moreno said Robredo’s presidential bid should have been aimed at lifting people from poverty.
“Maaaring wala akong pera, o wala akong sikat na mga magulang katulad nila, o asawang katulad nila, what matters most is walang tapakan ng pagkatao,” he said.
“At it doesn’t mean na kapag kami ay sasagot, ay bastos na agad. Eh ugaling elitista ‘yan eh, anong tawag dyan, matapobre,” he noted.
Moreno in the past few weeks was perceived by Robredo’s supporters as a Marcos ally, following his amiable remarks on the possible presidential candidacy of former senator Bongbong Marcos’, son of the late dictator Ferdinand Marcos.
Netizens deemed Moreno’s pronouncements to be an acknowledgment of the rights of the Marcos family to defend themselves amid constant reminders of the Marcos regime’s abuses and plunder. However, those aligned with Moreno implied that the quote was spliced, as he was only providing a context on what may happen if Marcos wins in the 2022 polls.
Earlier, Moreno clarified that his vision of progress should he win in the upcoming elections would not mean forgetting the sins of past administrations and former leaders who have been charged for possible wrongdoings.
Moreno also stressed that his criticism of Robredo has nothing to do with gender.
“We must address the situation and we are responsible for our actions. We don’t look at you like men or women,” he said.
“I respect each and everyone’s opinion, but that doesn’t mean I don’t deserve one. Karapatan ko rin mag-opinyon, and karapatan kong ipagtanggol ang isang bagay na alam kong mali […] Kung ma-offend ka, I am sorry, pasensya, I am no perfect, I am no perfect,” he added.
Moreno, who is running under the Aksyon Demokratiko party, was one of the individuals whom Robredo met before the unity talks for a united opposition broke down.
Three candidates that Robredo talked to — Moreno, and Senators Manny Pacquiao and Panfilo Lacson, have filed their certificates of candidacy (COCs) for president in the May 2022 polls.
Robredo later revealed that the reason why the unity talks failed was that she found differences between her and other candidates’ stand regarding key issues.
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