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An admission of concern


After so much public insults have been hurled against the vice-president, the Palace has finally admitted that President Rodrigo Duterte is worried that despite her supposed shortcomings, Leni Robredo may eventually wrestle the presidency.

This apprehension flies on the face of the national leadership which has overconfidently claimed that Duterte’s successor is unfit for the presidency. In a recent statement, Duterte even depicted Robredo as having an angel face but with the mind of a demon.

These continuing Palace’s tirades bare a kind of leadership that presents itself as holier than thou. In fact, the presidency has become so overly sensitive that any attempt from the opposition to shoot down any double-bladed declaration is deemed an idiocy.

Amid rabid presidential spleens, the Palace, often without compunction, has recklessly gone beyond decent declarations, believing perhaps that by using vulgar language and warning foes with threats the President has gained leverage. But the public calls it ‘pikon.’

The persistent verbal tussle between Duterte and his successor, has awfully exposed the flaws of the incumbent leadership. While the Palace has asserted to have done its best in addressing issues, it has failed to satisfactorily respond to simple queries why the country has lagged behind in terms of forging a vaccine deal.

Duterte’s henchmen should be told that Robredo, whether running for higher office or not in 2022, is not the central issue. The main subject is why the national leadership, with its retinue of retired generals and wealthy secretaries, has committed so many blunders and oversights.

If the vice president is viewed by the Palace as an early political loser even before the certificates of candidacy have been filed, the other side of the fence, lumped as ‘yellows,’ has started to see the Duterte regime as a lame duck given the missteps it has so far committed.

The Duterte leadership may eventually find itself haunted by claims that have failed to take off. Especially in the fight to rid the bureaucracy of corruption, the president has consistently ducked the subject by reappointing notorious individuals already known for their disrepute.

Admitting early in the political game that Robredo can possibly upset any pro-Duterte bet is also an acknowledgment that the issues that stare on the face of the incumbent leadership may eventually weigh heavily on the agenda to perpetuate the Duterte steamroller. Of course, in the absence of a well-oiled machinery, fat wallets to fund the campaign, and the rise of a strong anti-Duterte coalition, the odds are still stacked in favor of the ruling bloc.

Surely, the Robredo factor has become an unsettling matter.

What do you think?

Written by Tempo Desk

TEMPO Front Page March 5, 2021

The stone… rejected