Robredo bats for stronger political party system through electoral reforms

Published October 18, 2021, 2:36 PM

by Raymund Antonio

Given the opportunity, Vice President and presidential aspirant Leni Robredo will push for electoral reforms to strengthen the country’s political system, improve participatory governance, and prevent politicians from jumping from one political party to another.

Vice President Leni Robredo (Jansen Romero/MANILA BULLETIN)

Robredo said the political party should embody the advocacies and platforms of the candidate. Instead, it is being used for “convenience.”

“Kung pagdedesisyunan nating ayusin iyong (If we are going to change the) political party system, kailangan mag-umpisa iyon sa (it needs to start with) electoral reforms. Kailangan bigyan ng mas malawak na participation iyong ordinaryong mamamayan para iyong mga politicians kagaya namin ay nagiging sensitive sa pakiramdam ng mga constituency na pinaninilbihan namin (We need to give ordinary Filipinos a chance to participate so politicians like us will be sensitive to the feelings of the constituency we serve),” she told reporters in Marawi City.

The Vice President was in Marawi to meet various civil society organizations, academe, and advocates in the Bangsamoro Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (BARMM).

READ: Robredo debunks claims Mindanao trip is for political gains; ‘I’m always here’

She has been vocal in saying that the once-ruling Liberal Party (LP), which she chairs, has decimated because most of its members went to the ruling PDP-Laban when President Duterte won in 2016.

This does not help in the “political maturity” of the people, she said, noting that fixing the country’s political system will contribute to its progress.

“Hindi naman kailangan nasa partido ka ng presidente para maging supportive ka pero kailangan sana na iyong partido, iyon iyong nag-a-identify kung ano iyong mga pinaglalaban mo. Pero sa atin, walang ganoon (You don’t need to be in the president’s party to be supporting but your party should identify what you are fighting for. But here, it’s not like that),” she lamented.

Robredo is running for president as an independent candidate, though she is still the chairman of LP, the same party that brought the late former President Benigno “Noynoy” Aquino III to power.

READ: Robredo explains why she chose to run as an independent presidential bet

Despite criticisms that she can’t handle the issues in her own party, the vice president remained adamant that her running as independent was a “tactical move” to make others feel comfortable associating themselves with her without the labels.

She, however, did not say if she will be open to welcome other candidates to her party if she wins next year.

“So sa akin, ang Liberal Party naman kahit maliit siya, basta ipinaglalaban niya iyong kaniyang mga paninindigan (for me, the Liberal Party even if it’s just small, as long as it fights for its platforms), that is enough,” the lady official said.

There are “best practices” all over the world that can serve as “models” to strengthen the country’s political system.