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Leni: Jesse is with me throughout the journey

leni Robredo

Leading vice presidential candidate Leni Robredo during a thanksgiving Mass at Church of the Gesu in Ateneo de Manila University. INQUIRER PHOTO

NAGA CITY—Camarines Sur Rep. Leni Robredo received the news that she officially won the vice presidential race while on her way to visit the grave of her husband, former Interior Secretary Jesse Robredo, on Friday.

Robredo believes her husband continues to guide her because her victory came on the day Jesse would have celebrated his 58th birthday.

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Robredo said her victory reminded her of Jesse’s principle in life that anything one wants to achieve is coupled with sacrifice and determination and it would not be served on a silver platter.

“I worked hard and visited so many places. What I have achieved could be an inspiration to ordinary people that they can do the same because this is proof that this not exclusive to the wealthy, people with connections or people with [a popular] name,” Robredo said.

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“On a personal level, I say that Jesse is with me all throughout the journey because I feel he is always with me,” she said.

Robredo also dropped by the Minor Basilica of the Our Lady of Penafrancia to offer a prayer of gratitude for her victory. The church bell was rung while Robredo was at the basilica, reports said.

Robredo said she was happy that the official canvassing of votes showed that she won because it dispelled allegations of discrepancies in copies of certificates of canvass.

“But it was shown during the canvassing that we (her camp and the camp of her closest rival, Sen. Ferdinand ‘Bongbong’ Marcos Jr.) have the same COCs and there was no difference and significant discrepancies pointed out,” she said

“I am happy because of the serious allegations against our camp, it has been proven that there is no truth to their allegations. I was worried then because people who do not know me might believe (in what they’re saying),” Robredo said.

“I am open to whatever investigation on the allegations of Senator Marcos but my appeal is to stop mudslinging because it affects the system and the supporters who volunteered their time, effort and resources,” she said.

Robredo said she is excited to work with President-elect Rodrigo Duterte even though they differ on many aspects.

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“It is not necessary that [we share] the same beliefs. The challenges will come on the things that we [have opposing views]. I hope [this] will not be a hindrance to our cooperation,” she said.

“The elections have been very divisive and it is now time for unity and I am willing to go an extra mile to cooperate with the [incoming] President so that the country can move on,” she said.

Naga City Mayor John Bongat said Robredo’s victory was not only an achievement for Naga and the Bicol region.

“It is an achievement as well of good, transparent and responsive governance. The completion of canvassing tonight came at a most opportune time considering that today happens to be the 58th birth anniversary of her husband,” Bongat said.

Emily del Castillo, Robredo’s elementary and high school classmate at Colegio de Sta. Isabel, now Universidad de Sta. Isabel, said their batchmates were proud of her achievement.

“Prove to the whole nation that you truly deserve to be our Vice President,” said Del Castillo.

About 100 of Robredo’s classmates actively campaigned for her via Facebook and volunteered themselves to gather donations and contributions from other Nagueños and supporters.

Some supporters donated campaign materials, shirts and cash so they could campaign for Robredo.  With a report from Shiena Barrameda

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TAGS: Bongbong Marcos, Elections 2016, Jesse Robredo, Leni Robredo, vice presidency
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