Robredo only stated facts in UN video, says spokesperson

MANILA, Philippines – Amid criticism of Vice President Leni Robredo's video message to the United Nations (UN), her spokesperson said she only stated facts and did not humiliate the country before the international community.

"Naimbitahan po si VP Leni sa isang UN Convention na naglalayon na tingnan yung mga extrajudicial killings in the name of the drug war. Ito po ay isang side session ng Commission on Narcotics – Narcotics Drugs annual meeting sa Vienna," Georgina Hernandez, spokesperson of the Vice President, explained in an interview with dwIZ radio.

(VP Leni was invited to a UN Convention that looks into extrajudicial killings brought about by the drug war. This is a side session of the annual meeting of the Commission on Narcotics – Narcotics Drugs in Vienna.)

"At dahil hindi po makakadalo si VP Leni ay hiningian na lang po siya ng video message kung saan sinabi po niya yung kalagayan natin dito sa ating bansa at yung pagdami ng mga taong namamatay dahil sa tinatawag na drug war," Hernandez added.

(Since the VP could not attend, she was asked to give a video message where she only stated the condition in our country and the fact that a lot of people have died due to the drug war.)

Hernandez noted that the issue of summary killings has long attracted global attention, ever since President Rodrigo Duterte launched the war on drugs last year.

In the video played during the March 16 meeting, Robredo said that Filipinos were now feeling "hopeless and helpless" given the spate of killings in communities suspected of harboring drug dealers and users.

Hernandez said Robredo based her statement on her dialogues with members of the urban poor whose families or neighbors have been victims of extrajudicial killings.

Robredo was criticized for humilitating the Philippine government in the video. Speaker Pantaleon Alvarez even cited it as one of the reasons that makes him certain the Vice President is behind the first impeachment complaint filed against Duterte on Thursday.

The Robredo camp denied this.

"Magdalo Representative Gary Alejano himself said that no group is behind the impeachment complaint he filed and VP Leni Robredo has no hand in it," said Hernandez in Filipino.

"VP Leni respects the mandate of our President," she added. – Rappler.com

Patty Pasion

Patty leads the Rappler+ membership program. She used to be a Rappler multimedia reporter who covered politics, labor, and development issues of vulnerable sectors.

image