Robredo camp 'challenged' by physical campaigning, tight schedules during pandemic

As the official campaign season nears, presidential aspirant Vice President Leni Robredo on Thursday, Jan. 27, admitted that it will be a struggle for her to do on-the-ground campaigning because of the limitations due to COVID-19 and the conflicts with her schedule as the country’s second highest official.

Vice President Leni Robredo (OVP photo)

She said her team had to rush the turnover of a number of projects and programs in Zamboanga Peninsula, Basilan, Sulu, Tawi-Tawi (Zambasulta) this January because the campaign season will begin on Feb. 8.

But unlike in 2016, when Robredo went to far-flung areas in the country to meet with supporters, she will not be able to do now because of the physical restrictions posed by the pandemic and the unconventionality of her campaign.

“Sobrang hirap kasi (It’s hard because) we have to deal with a lot of restrictions...Ano siya, nali-limit talaga ‘yung (It limits the) opportunity, hindi gaya ng dati na pag naisipan mo, pwede mo na kaagad gawin. Ngayon hindi eh (Unlike before when you think about it, you can do it immediately. Now, it’s not),” she told reporters on the sidelines of her Swab Cab project in Tanay, Rizal.

Robredo, known face of the opposition, also mentioned that her campaign is unconventional because it’s the volunteers who are planning the campaign activities.

“Hindi sa amin centralized ‘yung planning kasi hindi talaga ito (The planning is not centralized with us because this is not a) conventional campaign. So ‘yung mga (the) volunteers, humihingi, nire-request namin na kung pwede i-present sa amin ‘yung plano. Kasi gusto lang sana natin siguruhin na nagko-comply tayo (asking, we request if they can present to us the plans. Because we want to make sure that we are complying) with the protocols,” Robredo added.

READ: Robredo campaign gaining ground; strong volunteer support noted — Trillanes

But because of the changing nature of the COVID-19 and the protocols, she said volunteer groups need a plan A, B, and C so as not to disrupt the plans.

The lone female presidential candidate is also set to attend a hearing on Friday, Jan. 28, at the Commission on Elections (Comelec) to ask permission to let her COVID-19 response initiatives despite the ban on using public resources during the campaign period.

Robredo said they will ask for the Bayanihan E-Konsulta, Swab Cab, and Vaccine Express initiatives to be exempted from the prohibition because these are vital during these times.

Earlier, she already said that she will stop going to these initiatives.

The Vice President was in Tanay, Rizal to oversee her Swab Cab project there.

The free testing service, which run from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m, was open to walk-in patients from other cities and municipalities.

After testing, all positive patients received a care pack containing 20 pieces Phenylpropanolamine Hydrochloride /Chlorphenamine Maleate, 20 pieces Carbocisteine, 20 pieces Paracetamol, and 20 pieces Vitamin C.