Robredo spox belies Roque’s claim on VP's gov't role

Published July 21, 2021, 4:43 PM

by Raymund Antonio

The spokesman of Vice President Leni Robredo on Wednesday, July 21, debunked the allegations made by Presidential spokesman Harry Roque that Robredo chose to be an opposition leader rather than serve in President Duterte’s Cabinet.

Lawyer Barry Gutierrez posted on Twitter a photo of the text message by one “CabSec Jun” who asked the vice president to stop attending Cabinet meetings.

Vice Presidential spokesperson Barry Gutierrez (OVP)

“Ayoko na sanang patulan pero sobrang sinungaling eh. ‘Pinili’ daw ni VP Leni na umalis sa Gabinete para maging lider ng oposisyon. Hay naku, magsisinungaling na lang andali pang hulihin. Resibo: (I actually don’t want to react anymore, but he’s a liar. VP Leni apparently ‘chose’ to leave the Cabinet to be the leader of the opposition. Oh my, the lie is so easy to spot. Receipt:),” he said in a tweet.

Resibo or receipt in English is a slang for “proof” or “evidence.”

The photo showed a text message sent presumably by former Cabinet Secretary Leoncio “Jun” Evasco Jr.

It said: “Gd afternoon Madam Vice President. Mayor Rody Duterte through Bong Go asked me to relay to you his instruction for you to desist from attending all Cabinet mtngs starting This Monday Dec 5, 2pm. Ty.”

The text was referring to Robredo who was asked not to attend Cabinet meetings back in December 2016 when she was still the chair of the Housing and Urban Development Coordinating Council (HUDCC). She eventually resigned.

On Wednesday, Roque claimed that it was the vice president’s choice to become a “decoration” in the government after she chose to resign from the Duterte Cabinet to lead the opposition. He insisted that the President did not lack in giving her a role in government.

READ: Roque tells Robredo: Let’s see who’s president after 2022 polls

This came after Robredo said that if Duterte wins as vice president in the 2022 polls, which he said he will do to escape criminal prosecution, he will not experience the same things she has to go through.

In 2016, Robredo was appointed as head of the HUDCC, but resigned after she was asked to stop attending Cabinet meetings. She was also appointed as co-chair of the Inter-Agency Committee on Anti-Illegal Drugs (ICAD) in 2019, but her stint was cut short when Duterte fired her.