Robredo learns to be resilient from false claims thrown at her

Published May 28, 2018, 3:17 PM

by Francine Ciasico

By Raymund Antonio

If there’s one lesson she learned from the false claims thrown at her, it’s resilience.

(photo sourced from VP Leni Robredo's facebook page)
(photo sourced from VP Leni Robredo’s facebook page)

A victim of fake news and unfounded rumors, Vice President Leni Robredo said that dealing with the relentless attacks on her since she assumed office is a “test of character.”

And she is not the first one to blink.

“Iyong ng mga ganito iyong nagte-test sa iyo. Ito, hindi puwedeng lahat… hindi puwedeng lahat magaan. Hindi puwedeng lahat madali. Itong ganito, tinuturuan kang maging resilient (These [attacks] test you. Not everything should be light. Not everything comes easy. These teach you how to be resilient.),” Robredo said.

Robredo was asked in Naga City about her recent rebuttal on false information circulating on social media against her. She debunked them one by one in the first of a series of videos her office posted on Facebook.

The Office of the Vice President launched the video series, titled “VP Leni fights back vs fake news,” after Robredo herself started calling out social media posts spreading lies against her.

Though mindful of her bashers who published fake news online, she is not totally against public criticisms because these could make people in government better.

Robredo said she believed it is important for a public official like her to be always “open and transparent” to public scrutiny.

“Kailangang may nagki-criticize sa amin, kasi kung wala na sa iyong nagki-criticize, baka magkamali ka ng landas (There should be someone who criticizes us, because if there is none, we might take the wrong path.),” the Vice President told reporters.

Unlike in the past, the country’s second highest official has changed her approach to dealing with purveyors of false information by speaking up against them and addressing the fake news head on.

From ignoring the trolls and dignifying their false allegations, she denied social media posts, among which she has had any romantic relationship with Quezon City Rep. Jorge “Bolet” Banal and several other men after her husband’s death.

She also dismissed reports she is pregnant, living a luxurious lifestyle, and she is the mastermind behind the death of her husband and ex-Interior Secretary Jesse Robredo, among others.

“I realized my mistake. I have been at the receiving end of fake news. My decision at first was to not dignify. I was thinking that if I wasted my time on this, I will lose focus on my job,” Robredo said in a mix of Filipino and English.

“I was focused but I realized that by choosing not to answer, people will believe it. And we can’t blame them because it’s the only thing they see and read. That’s why I said lately the next time there is another rumor that comes out, we will fight,” she said.